Patrick Hayes, the Washington impressario who helped lead a survey critical of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, has withdrawn his name from nomination to the commission.
Hayes withdrew for "straight personal and professional reasons," he said yesterday. He said he would have less time to devote to the commission than he had hoped because of unanticipated financial challenges to the Washington Performing Arts Society, of which he is managing director.
He said, however, he hopes Mayor Barry will hold his nomination "in abeyance" until there is a vacancy on the commission at a time when he will feel free to accept. In the meantime, he said, he will "write memos" to the commissioners if he wants to bring matters to their attention.
Three new appointees to the commission-John Kinard, Heidi Berry and Theodis Gay-testified on their nominations at a City Council hearing yesterday.
Peggy Cooper, whom Barry has nominated chairwoman of the Commission, was not present. Officials of the City Council and the mayor's office said Cooper was out of the country, keeping a longstanding appointment. Letters prasing Cooper were submitted to the record.
Kinard, who worked with Hayes as chairmen of a committee that wrote Barry a harsh appraisal of the commission, testified that if he had his way, he would "completely deny to anybody who sits on the commission a chance to put in an application for a grant from the commission." But he also stressed the importance of "pulling together," as the "few dollars," allotted the commission are "an embarrassment."
Berry testified that the commission must be made "100 percent competent and responsible in applying for grant money" and disposing of it. Asked later how the commission had failed, she replied, "The fact that we have lost NEA grant money speaks for itself."
A committee of the National Endowment for the Arts recently rejected the commission's application for its basic share of federal funds for next fiscal year. Larry Enal, executive director of the commission, said yesterday a new application was being prepared and, "We're feeling good. The money is coming to town."
Barry has nominated four additional commissioners since he named those who testified yesterday. They are John Blake, chairman of Anacostia Neighborhood Museum board; George Koch, chairman of the Board of Arts D.C., a CETA-financed jobs program; Babara J. Brannon, a nutritionist who has been active in the Southwest Festival of the Arts; and Hugo Medrano, an actor and founder/president of GALA Inc., an Hispanic theatre group.