Sunday, April 17, 2011

MCC budget update

From the Massachusetts Cultural Council Web site, an update:

The Massachusetts House Committee on Ways & Means proposed a budget that would cut funding for the arts, humanities, and sciences by $1.65 million, or 18 percent.

Thanks to your advocacy, more than a quarter of the Massachusetts House of Representatives signed on to an amendment to stop further cuts to state funding for the arts, humanities, and sciences through the MCC.

What you can do now:

Contact your Massachusetts House Representative before April 25:

    * Urge him/her to support Amendment # 417 and stop the cuts to arts and cultural funding through the MCC!

Amendments must be approved by a majority of the House, which has 160 members.

What comes next?
The full House is set to debate the House Ways and Means recommendations during the week of April 25, and will vote on a final House recommendation.

The Senate will take up the state budget in May. The two chambers must then agree on a final spending plan before sending it back to the Governor for final approval. The new fiscal year begins July 1.

Budget Process to Date:

    * 4/15/11 - Rep. Sarah Peake of Provincetown, House Chair of the Joint Committee on Tourism, Arts, and Cultural Development, filed Amendment 417 to hold cultural funding at this year’s level of $9.1 million. The amendment would reverse a proposed $1.6 million cut to MCC’s budget contained in the House Ways & Means Committee’s version of the state budget for fiscal year 2012.

    * 4/14/11 - Rep. Sarah Peake's office reports that she received hundreds of calls and e-mails supporting level funding for the MCC. Thanks to your advocacy, 45 House members from every part of the state—representing communities large and small, urban, suburban, and rural, signed on as co-sponsors of Rep. Peake's amendment.

    * 4/13/11 - House Ways & Means Budget Proposes Another Significant Cut to Arts & Cultural Funding

    * 1/26/11 - Governor's Budget Calls for $8.4 Million for Massachusetts Cultural Council

Learn about your state elected officials

    * Governor/Administration
    * Senate
    * House of Representatives

Who are they? What are their priorities? How can arts and culture help them achieve their public policy goals?

Contact MCC's Greg Liakos or Neluka Levy to share your stories of how arts and culture are making your community a better place, or to request information or assistance.