Friday, May 1, 2009
Monday, April 20, 2009
Friday, April 17, 2009
Twenty-nine Cincinnati artists have applied for 2009 City Individual Artist Grants of up to $6,000.
The bad news is that City Council’s last budget slashed funds available for these grants from $35,000 to only $15,000.
Council designated $20,000 for a pet project of former Council Member Cranley identified at the time only as the “C. Smith Photography Proposal.” This proposal bypassed the competitive artist grant program open to all Cincinnati artists and yet garnered over half the funds available.
The City Competitive Arts Grant Program for individual artists is a fair and open process where artists’ proposals and past work are carefully reviewed by a panel of their peers for innovation, professionalism, and benefit to the needs of our diverse community along with the artist’s ability to carry out the project.
The C. Smith Proposal bypassed this review, cutting to the head of a line of 29 other local artists who followed the rules and submitted project proposals, budgets, and work samples.
In addition, a report submitted by the City Manager enumerates “concerns” regarding Mr. Smith’s “ability to fulfill contractual responsibilities.” This report is public record. See full text at:http://city-egov.cincinnati-oh.gov/Webtop/ws/council/public/child/Blob/25915.pdf?rpp=-10&m=1&w=doc_no%3D%27200900487%27
There is still time to fix this! The Finance Committee of City Council votes Monday (4/20) on spending the $20,000 earmarked for the C. Smith Photography Proposal.
Please email the Finance Committee now and urge them to restore the $20,000 diverted from the grants program to Individual Artists who followed the process and agreed to compete in good faith for the limited funds available to fund the arts.
Please tell council that you favor fair artist grants not earmarks and pet projects.
Better still, tell them in person! Join me in speaking at the start of the Finance Committee meeting,
1:00 pm Monday 4/20 in Council Chambers
ask for a yellow speaker's card at the desk when you arrive
Members of the Finance Committee include:
Y. LAKETA COLE, Chair
JEFF BERDING, Vice Chairperson
CHRIS BORTZ, Member
DAVID CROWLEY, Member
LESLIE GHIZ, Member
GREG HARRIS, Member
ROXANNE QUALLS, Member
CECIL THOMAS, Member
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Has anyone noticed that Cincinnati City Council voted to eliminate all funding for arts organizations from the 2009 city budget?
Monday, December 31, 2007
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Council Members unanimously supported the funding of the arts grant program for one more year!
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Significant Program ChangesTitle: Eliminate Arts Grants ProgramBudget Amount: ($216,120) Fund: General Fund FTE: -1.8Description:This represents the elimination of the Arts Grants program within the Recreation Department.The City will no longer be involved in the competitive artist grants, and the Arts Consortiumwill no longer receive budget dollars to help offset its costs.Comment/Recommendation:This decrease in funding is recommended due to the limited nature of General Fund resources.The decrease amount is net of personnel resources in the amount $10,830 needed to fund sixtydays of employment in 2008, prior to the separation of the full-time employee.p. 339 City of CincinnatiRecommended 2008 Operating Budget UpdateTHE MAYOR's RESPONSE to this INCLUDES:
The Arts – Small Arts Capital and Individual Artists Grants Program
The Small Arts Capital and Individual Artist Grants program supports two key areas of a
strong arts community, smaller arts institutions and individual artists. Cincinnati has a
long tradition of strong support for our arts and cultural community. This program is
vital foster a diverse and vibrant arts community by ensuring that our smaller arts
institutions and our individual artists are strongly supported. I recommend restoring
$216,120 to fund the Small Arts and Individual Artist Grants program to provide
(Review this document at http://www.cincinnati-oh.gov/mayor/pages/-3048-/)The text posted here before was mistakenly from the mayor's response from LAST year. But the substance is pretty similar.Unclear here is the mayor's position on Grants for larger Arts Organizations as well as the staff position to support the grants program mentioned in the Manager's budget above. The $216,000 listed here is certainly not enough to cover all of these expenses.Last year's budget compromise ended in a series of vague agreements and lots of uncertainty about the future of City Arts Funding. Some funding is better than no funding, but when funds are distributed without a fair and predictable process, it makes any kind of arts planning impossible--both for the city and the members of the arts community.NEXT:City Council will vote on this budget following a series of Public Hearings. Last year a majority of council members DID NOT SUPPORT the Mayor's recommendation to keep arts funding in the budget. The result was a late night compromise that allowed a private funder to cover arts organization grants for two years while the city worked on a long-range plan to stabilize arts funding and keep the grant program out of this annual budget battle.THE CITY has not done its homework. There has been no plan!So send your postcards. Show council that City Arts Funding is Important to you.For more on local arts news and to comment on issues in the artsvisit Sarah Pearce's Enquirer Arts Blog http://frontier.cincinnati.com/blogs/art