From the Arts Council of New Orleans:
Last month Governor Jindal proposed a budget that reduces arts funding by 33% over last year’s budget. Last year’s arts budget was already less than HALF of what it was in 2009. Arts leaders expect the continued cuts to cripple the state’s cultural economy and tourism industry with a severe ripple effect. State arts funding supports a cultural economy that holds 148,500 Louisiana jobs and feeds a $10 billion industry.
If your organization receives Decentralized Arts Funding (DAF) or a Statewide Art Grant (SAG), you know how these cuts have affected your programming. The following information is grant awards made through the Decentralized program in Orleans Parish.
2009 – $246,888
2010 – $207,250 — reduced mid-year to $190,044
2011 – $178,240
2012 – $87,031
2013 – $58,310 If cuts are made as proposed!
The Arts Council of New Orleans also administers Decentralized funds in Jefferson and Plaquemines Parishes. Jefferson and Plaquemines Parishes have experienced similar cuts to their Decentralized grants too. At the state level, grants directly from the Louisiana Division of the Arts have been cut from five programs to only one program!
If you haven’t done so already, please join Louisiana Citizens for the Arts* TODAY by clicking here! We must have the participation of every arts organization and arts supporter in the state in order to have enough funds to keep a professional arts lobbyist in Baton Rouge at the legislative session every day. Individual memberships start at only $25. Please send in your donation as soon as possible or before April 27, 2012. The Arts Council of New Orleans has donated $2,000 to this effort.
The lobbyist cannot do it all. We need your help too. In past years, when we needed you most, you sent more than 40,000 e-mails to Louisiana Legislators. They listened and reinstated some of the funds the Governor cut. Please be on the lookout again this year for our messages asking you to write Legislators.
Louisiana Citizens for the Arts* (formerly Louisiana Partnership for Arts Advocacy) has been mobilizing artists, arts organizations, and arts enthusiasts for nearly 20 years. It has been key to building a strong grassroots network of well-informed arts advocates who have encouraged the Legislature to invest in arts funding not only as a quality of life issue, but also in terms of economic development. This year it adopted a new name that better reflects its mission: Louisiana Citizens for the Arts.
Please give serious consideration to this request.
Joycelyn L. Reynolds
Arts Council of New Orleans