Group decries Iowa funding for Bible-themed park - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Group decries Iowa funding for Bible-themed park

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A national group says Iowa shouldn't fund a planned Christian-themed park in Sioux City and should take back a $140,000 grant.
    
The Freedom From Religion Foundation, of Madison, Wisconsin, said in a letter to Iowa officials last week that giving grant money to The Shepherd's Garden violates the U.S. and Iowa constitutions.
    
Iowa Economic Development Authority spokeswoman Tina Hoffman says state money from the Vision Iowa grant would pay only for green space at the park and not for any of the project's religious elements.
    
Garrett Smith is a member of The Shepherd's Garden board of directors and says the project is Christian in focus but nondenominational. He says the group didn't seek state funding for the park's religious elements, specifically to avoid any issues about public funding for religion.
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