A planned amusement park in northern Kentucky featuring Noah’s Ark is not eligible for $18 million in state tourism tax benefits.
The Herald-Leader reports Tourism, Arts, and Heritage Cabinet Secretary sent the group Answers in Genesis a letter saying the commonwealth could not issue such tax benefits for projects with discriminatory hiring practices.
Answers in Genesis is the Christian group behind the Creation Museum, which seeks to explain the origins of the earth through the teachings of the bible. The group’s next project has been dubbed the Ark Park, and will feature a giant ship based on the story of Noah and the great flood.
But questions over whether the state should allow the park tourism tax benefits arose when Answers In Genesis refused to commit to not discriminating based on religion in the hiring process for park employees.
In his letter to a lawyer for Answers in Genesis, Tourism Cabinet Secretary Bob Stewart wrote “it is readily apparent that the project has evolved from a tourist attraction to an extension of AIG’s ministry that will no longer permit the commonwealth to grant the project tourism development incentives.”
Officials with Answers In Genesis were not immediately available for comment following news of the state's decision.