The New Arts, Culture and Tourism Caucus

Among the accomplishments of Arts, Culture and Tourism Advocacy Day on April 8, a unanimous vote to change the name of the legislative Tourism Caucus to the Arts, Culture and Tourism Caucus was a significant achievement for our industry. The name change recognizes the important impact that arts and culture, along with tourism, have on our state.

A list of the Arts, Culture and Tourism Caucus members is included below. (You can find your own legislators here.) Please thank your legislators who are on the caucus already, and encourage those who are not to join!

Arts, Culture and Tourism Caucus Members

Rep. Barry, Jill
Rep. Betts, Whit
Rep. Borer, Dorinda (Co-Chair)
Rep. Boyd, Pat
Rep. Buckbee, William
Rep. Camillo, Fred
Rep. Carney, Devin
Rep. Cheeseman, Holly
Rep. Concepcion, Julio
Rep. Conley, Christine
Rep. Dillon, Patricia
Rep. Dubitsky, Doug
Rep. Floren, Livvy
Rep. France, Mike
Rep. Frey, John
Rep. Garibay, Jane
Rep. Gresko, Joseph
Rep. Haines, Irene
Rep. Horn, Maria
Rep. Klarides-Ditria, Nicole
Rep. Kokoruda, Noreen
Rep. Lavielle, Gail
Rep. MacLachlan, Jesse
Rep. McCarty, Kathleen
Rep. Palm, Christine
Rep. Petit, William
Rep. Riley, Emmett
Rep. Rose, Kim
Rep. Rotella, Kate
Rep. Ryan, Kevin
Rep. Simmons, Caroline
Rep. Steinberg, Jonathan
Rep. Tercyak, Peter
Rep. Turco, Gary
Rep. Wood, Kerry
Rep. Zawistowski, Tami
Rep. Zupkus, Lezlye
Sen. Berthel, Eric
Sen. Cohen, Christine
Sen. Formica, Paul (Co-Chair)
Sen. Hwang, Tony
Sen. Kushner, Julie
Sen. Maroney, James
Sen. Martin, Henri
Sen. Miner, Craig
Sen. Osten, Catherine
Sen. Somers, Heather

Join Us for Arts, Culture + Tourism Advocacy Day

Join CAA and the Connecticut Tourism Coalition for Arts, Culture + Tourism Advocacy Day on April 8!

This is an opportunity to collectively show our political leaders how valuable we are to the future of Connecticut. Your presence and voice are essential during this budget planning process to highlight the tangible benefits of investing in our industries, from building new jobs to developing vibrant cities, attracting visitors and millennials, and to expanding state tax revenue.

LOCATION

Legislative Office Building
300 Capitol Avenue
Room 1D
Hartford, CT 06106

SCHEDULE

9:00 a.m. Advocacy Day Prep Meeting – Exclusively for CAA Members

  • What to Expect at Advocacy Day
  • Legislative Session 2019 Update and Policy Recommendations
  • Tips for Advocating for the Arts
  • Brief Q & A

9:15 a.m. Registration + Exhibit Tables

  • Pickup your name tag and materials for the day.
  • Socialize, network, and visit tables from various arts, culture, and tourism partners from around the state.

10:00 a.m. Program

  • Welcome from hosts CT Tourism Coalition and CT Arts Alliance
  • Remarks from Wendy Bury (Southeastern Connecticut Cultural Coalition) and Stephen Tagliatela (Saybrook Point Inn), co-chairs of the Lamont-Bysiewicz Transition Arts, Culture and Tourism Policy Committee
  • Remarks from legislators, including Representative Toni Walker and others to be announced
  • Remarks from the Department of Economic and Community Development, including Randy Fiveash from Office of Tourism, Liz Shapiro from the Office of the Arts, and others to be announced

11:30 a.m. Tourism Caucus Meeting

  • This meeting is open to the public and usually televised on CT-N, so a standing-room-only crowd from arts, culture, and tourism is essential to make our collective message clear.
  • Welcome from Senator Paul Formica and Representative Dorinda Borer plus remarks from other legislators in the caucus
  • CT Arts Alliance and CT Tourism Coalition have specifically invited representatives to speak to the caucus members
  • Agenda includes a discussion about changing their name to Arts, Culture, and Tourism Caucus

TO PREPARE FOR THE DAY

  • Tell the legislators who represent where you live and work that you are attending Arts, Culture, and Tourism Advocacy Day and invite them to the program and caucus meeting. Not sure who they are? Search for them here.
  • Educate yourself on our policy recommendation to increase arts, culture, and tourism funding, which CT Tourism Coalition, CT Arts Alliance, CT Humanities, Marine Trades Association, CT Restaurant Association, and, most recently, the Speaker’s Blue Ribbon Panel on Tourism have endorsed.
  • Plan your travel, especially if this is your first time in the Legislative Office Building (often referred to as the “LOB”). Here is an interactive map and the detailed directions for driving and public transit. Plan enough time to get through security.
  • Make a plan for lunch. There is a cafeteria in the Legislative Office Building, but you are also welcome to pack your own food and snacks.
  • Bring some swag! We encourage you to bring materials that represent you and your organization, but please plan to bring home these materials at the end of the event.

CT Advocates in DC!

On March 4 and 5, a small but impressive delegation of Connecticut artists, arts administrators, and advocates traveled to Washington, D.C. for the Arts Action Summit and Arts Advocacy Day, hosted by Americans for the Arts.

The Connecticut contingent joined approximately five hundred other arts advocates from all fifty states and a few U.S. territories. Our state actually had the strongest showing from New England, and we impressed colleagues from some states of larger size! A day of inspiring and educational speeches, workshops, and planning sessions concluded with a visit to the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts where Broadway and Hollywood actor Brian Stokes Mitchell performed, and where Supreme Court Justice Sandra Sotomayor introduced legendary actor Rita Morena who gave the 32nd Annual Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy.

The following day, advocates converged on Capitol Hill, and our Connecticut delegates visited the offices of both Senators and all five Representatives to advocate for increased funding for the NEA and arts-related legislation. All of the Congressional staff was incredibly welcoming and supportive of the work we’re doing on behalf of the arts at home. Representative Joe Courtney spent several minutes with the group, just as he arrived back to his office on a flight from Connecticut. Newly-elected Representative Jahana Hayes was also available to speak with the group for a short time, and she’s eager to support both the arts and of course arts education. We were glad to see much art in the offices of all of our representatives too, and art from high school students around the country in the Congressional hallways.

Our Connecticut delegation was led by CAA Administrator Darren Farrington, who is also Executive and Artistic Director of No Boundaries Youth Theater in New Britain. CAA Board Members joining were CAA Vice President Dartanion Reed, Executive Director of Hartford City Ballet, and Daniel Fitzmaurice, Executive Director of the Arts Council of Greater New Haven. They were joined by Kate McOmber, Vice President for Communications and Donor Relations at CAA Member Greater Hartford Arts Council, and by Laura Stetler, Program Manager at the Women’s Business Development Council, who is also a violinist, an arts administrator, and a military spouse (Active Duty Navy). Suzanne Kachmar, Executive Director of City Lights & Company in Bridgeport, joined for the first day of activities.

Our thanks to Americans for the Arts for organizing and hosting these important advocacy opportunities, and to all of our attendees from Connecticut. The Arts Action Summit and Arts Advocacy Day are held in March each year, and CAA would welcome more attendees from our State—including students, artists, performers, arts administrators, and arts advocates of all kinds!

Governor Releases Two-Year Budget

In an address to the state General Assembly today, Governor Lamont released a two-year proposed budget. (For his full proposal and background documentation, click here.)

Regarding arts items, the Governor’s proposal recommends maintaining flat funding in both fiscal years 2020 and 2021. His supporting documentation recognizes that “Governor Lamont’s budget maintains funding for arts and tourism programs. In Connecticut, tourism is a $14 billion economic driver that supports thousands of jobs statewide. The budget maintains over $4 million to market Connecticut as a premier destination for tourism and business growth under the Statewide Marketing program. Additionally, the budget maintains funding to support grants to arts and tourism entities throughout the region.”

The General Assembly has several weeks to come back with its proposal, and budget negotiations will begin. For other legislative proposals affecting the arts, click here.


To receive arts advocacy news and alerts, subscribe to our email list. To become a Charter Member of CAA and support our advocacy efforts on behalf of statewide arts and culture organizations, please click here.

Join Us Wednesday for Arts Policy Recommendations

On Wednesday, the Governor-elect’s Arts, Culture and Tourism Transition Policy Committee will present recommendations to the incoming administration.

The Committee is one of fifteen groups assembled by Governor-elect Lamont to make policy recommendations on issues ranging from education and healthcare to criminal justice and the economy.

Chaired by CAA Board Member Wendy Bury, the Committee has reported great progress in compiling detailed and innovative recommendations about how our industries can strengthen Connecticut.

Lamont painting

Governor-elect Ned Lamont with Kwadwo Adae this summer (Photo: Lucy Gellman)

Please join us this coming Wednesday December 19 from 10 – 11 a.m. at Goodspeed Opera House for the report by the Arts, Culture and Tourism Transition Policy Committee. Lieutenant Governor-elect Susan Bysiewicz will represent the administration, and the public is welcome to attend.

Please extend this invitation to your staff, audiences, friends, volunteers, and Board of Directors. A strong turnout will demonstrate to the administration that the creative sector matters in Connecticut!

 

Lamont-Bysiewicz Transition
Arts, Culture and Tourism Policy Committee

Wendy Bury (Southeastern CT Cultural Coalition) – Co-Chair
Stephen Tagliatela (Connecticut Tourism Coalition) – Co-Chair
Elsie Chapman (International Festival of Arts and Ideas)
Scott Dolch (Connecticut Restaurant Association)
David Fay (The Bushnell)
Daniel Fitzmaurice (Arts Council of Greater New Haven)
Jason Guyot (Mashantucket Pequot Tribe/Foxwoods)
Jeffrey Hamilton (Mohegan Tribe/Mohegan Sun)
Min Jung Kim (New Britain Museum of American Art)
Kathleen Maher (Barnum Museum)
Jason Mancini (Connecticut Humanities)
Maria Miranda (Miranda Creative, Connecticut Tourism Coalition)
Vivian Nabeta (Harriet Beecher Stowe Center)
Michael Price (Commission on Culture and Tourism)
Lisa Scails (Cultural Alliance of Western CT)
Tony Sheridan (Chamber of Commerce of Eastern CT)
Brett Thompson (Greater Hartford Arts Council)
Tina Tison (The Maritime Aquarium)
Steve White (Mystic Seaport)

Imperative for Continued Office of the Arts Leadership

There has been some confusion and misinformation this week about the recently announced job posting for an Arts and Culture Administrator at the Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD). The Connecticut Arts Alliance, a non-profit advocacy organization led by artists, educators, and arts executives from all over our state, would like to clarify some details about this position and its importance to the creative sector in our state.

Up until a year ago, the person in this position had been appointed by the Governor, which has historically created inconsistencies with each selection or change of administration and politicization of the position. DECD corrected this problem last year by classifying (making permanent) the position with a clear job description and specific qualifications to oversee the Office of the Arts and State Historic Preservation Office. Kristina Newman-Scott, originally appointed by Governor Malloy in 2015 and often referred to as the Director of Culture, was hired for this permanent position.

DECD is simply rehiring for this job, which has been vacant since early summer when Newman-Scott left the position, as they would for any other vacancy in the department. This is not a political appointment and the job has specific criteria, which is why they are conducting a national search to secure the very best applicants to serve our state.

The Connecticut Arts Alliance has worked with many different leaders at DECD’s Office of the Arts over the last 15 years. During that time, the state arts agency has been periodically stalled from realizing its full potential for both the state and for the arts sector because of the frequent changes in leadership and inconsistent knowledge of and experience in the cultural sector. We need to maintain the status of this leadership position to ensure that our relationships with the federal government and many other state and local partners continue unimpeded, as well as to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the agency.

This position is dedicated to the long term, rather than the duration of a political appointment. At long last, Connecticut can have consistent cultural leadership with the required expertise to carry forward strategic initiatives and reinforce the agency’s very capable team. With this position in place, we now suffer fewer unnecessary delays in the progress and impact that the Office of the Arts could have for the state. Having this leadership position filled as a permanent, classified post will stop the practice of unintentional derailment of the agency by political appointees who do not have the experience or expertise or the commitment to the long-term.

For those who wonder—why does this position exist at all? If you are an artist, involved with an arts or cultural organization, or enjoy experiencing creative events in your community, then you know the importance of the Director of Culture to oversee our industry in state government and harness the power of the arts to educate the next generation, build vibrant communities, and attract and retain employers and residents.

If you are not a believer, then consider first that the nonprofits arts and cultural sector in Connecticut is an $800 million industry that supports over 23,000 jobs statewide. Next, this position for the Office of the Arts, together with those of Historic Preservation and the four museums, manages millions in federal and state funding and has critical oversight and responsibility for regulatory functions. This position leverages nearly $1 million in matching grants from the National Endowment for the Arts for statewide grantmaking and programs, which are guided by a formal strategic plan. Overall, strong leadership at the Office of the Arts helps to catalyze investment from the business and donor community, promote collaboration with other areas of government, particularly education and tourism, and ensure accountability and efficiency.

With the facts about and importance of this position now clear, the Connecticut Arts Alliance hopes that DECD will secure the best candidate possible as soon as possible for our next Director of Culture. It is important to maintain consistency in a sector that is one of Connecticut’s strengths and a solution to—not part of—Connecticut’s economic problems. Let’s not re-break what has already been fixed.

Help #SAVEtheNEA

Save the NEAThe Board and Staff of Connecticut Arts Alliance have written to the State’s Federal legislators and are reaching out to all arts supporters to help save and encourage funding of the National Endowment for the Arts.

On February 12, 2018, President Trump released his FY 2019 budget request.  The President’s proposal includes the termination of our nation’s cultural grant-making agencies, including the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Last July, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a funding level of $145 million for the NEA, which represented a $5 million cut. In November, the Senate set the NEA’s funding level at $150 million for FY18, which is level with its current budget (and only 0.004% of the Federal budget). As the funding process moves forward, we encourage our legislators to support no less than a funding level of $150 million for the NEA for FY18. We also ask them to support funding in the amount of $155 million for FY19 and to reject the President’s request to terminate the NEA.

The NEA is the single largest national funder of nonprofit arts in America. For more than 50 years, the NEA has expanded access to the arts for all Americans, awarding grants throughout all 50 states and U.S. Territories. NEA grants help leverage more than a 9 to 1 match in private charitable gifts and other state and local public funding. The NEA also has an exemplary partnership with the states, with 40 percent of program funds distributed through state arts agencies. In 2017, fourteen arts organizations in Connecticut directly received NEA funding, hundreds more indirectly benefitted from an NEA grant to the Connecticut Office of the Arts, and millions of our State’s citizens and out-of-state tourists have enjoyed NEA-funded programming.

With only a $150 million current annual budget, the NEA investments in the arts helps contribute to a $730 billion economic arts and culture economic industry, including 4.2 percent of the annual GDP and supporting 4.8 million jobs that yields a $26 billion trade surplus for the country. In Connecticut, the nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $797.3 million in annual economic activity in the state, supporting over 23,000 full-time equivalent jobs and generating $72.3 million in local and state government revenues.

We ask all supporters of the arts to contact their legislators to request their assurance that this work continues by supporting no less than $150 million for the NEA in the FY18 budget and $155 million in FY19.

Arts and the State Budget

Arts MatterWith a state budget still not passed in Connecticut, arts organizations—along with all other businesses and economic sectors—face uncertain financial futures. A survey conducted among nonprofit arts organizations and arts providers in September indicated that the delay in passing a state budget had already affected over 58% of respondents, primarily in requiring programming cuts. Other negative effects were payroll cuts, hiring freezes, reduction in operating hours, nonpayment of accounts payable, lack of booking arts education programs and performances through schools, and massive efforts to replace state dollars with private funding. Over 66% of respondents believed that further delay in passing a budget would cause additional hardships, with the most extreme fear being a forced closure.

As we continue to wait for a state budget, it is important to stress the economic necessity of arts funding—which represents only 0.02% of that budget—to our legislators. The following two messages must be our priority.

  • In order for Connecticut not to completely disqualify itself from receiving federal NEA matching funds, the state budget MUST have at least $1 million in designated arts funds sourced through the General Fund, and not through a fund that is controlled only by revenues generated by the hotel tax, as is currently proposed. Current budget proposals will disqualify Connecticut from receiving matching NEA funding.
  • In order to maintain, an already bare bones nonprofit cultural sector that has proven to be a sound and dependable return on investment, the arts need to receive at least $5 million in additional funding from the newly proposed Marketing, Culture and Tourism Account. That is what will allow the arts sector to continue to generate state and local revenues and make our state a great place to live, work, and play.

Connecticut’s nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $797.25 million in annual economic activity in the state of Connecticut, supporting over 23,000 full-time equivalent jobs and generating $72.27 million in local and state government revenues, according to the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 national economic impact study conducted by Americans for the Arts.

Please keep these facts in mind and, arts organizations and supporters, please continue to share them with your legislators and stress the importance of keeping the arts alive in our great state!

Connecticut Arts Generate $797.3 Million in Economic Activity

AEP5-graphic_titleAs Connecticut’s leaders debated the fate of the state’s budget, the Connecticut Arts Alliance drew attention to recently released economic impact data. According to the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study, conducted by Americans for the Arts, Connecticut’s nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $797.3 million in annual economic activity in the state, supporting over 23,000 full-time equivalent jobs and generating $72.3 million in local and state government revenues. The most comprehensive economic impact study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry ever conducted in the United States, Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 was conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education.

Results show that nonprofit arts and culture organizations in Connecticut spent over $515 million during 2015. This spending is far-reaching: organizations pay employees, purchase supplies, contract for services, and acquire assets within their community. Those dollars, in turn, generated nearly $525 million in household income for local residents and $72.3 million in local and state government revenues.

“Arts and culture is an economic engine that clearly provides ‘food on the table’ for many who work in the sector and those who work in the many industries that are supported by the sector,” stated Amy Wynn, president of the Connecticut Arts Alliance, the state-wide arts advocacy organization for Connecticut. “The data proves that our sector provides a solid return on investment as far as state arts funding, resulting in state and local revenues that are so important to Connecticut now and in the future. The arts sector is an accessible and cost-effective asset that connects, collaborates and impacts other sectors such as healthcare, public safety, education, social services, innovation in business, manufacturing and science, and much more,” she added.

“The arts are a fundamental component of a thriving economy. From a numbers perspective the arts generate jobs, cultural tourism, and economic impact. Less quantifiable but equally as valuable: art helps to create community identity and vibrancy, and is critical to attracting and retaining an innovative workforce,” said Kristina Newman-Scott, Director of Culture of Connecticut Office of the ArtsDepartment of Economic and Community Development. “I believe we have an enormous responsibility to the creators and consumers in the state to protect the legacy of the arts in Connecticut and help foster growth in the creative economy,” she added.

Arts Industry Boon for Local Businesses

In addition to spending by organizations, the nonprofit arts and culture industry nationally leverages $102.5 billion in event-related spending by local and out-of-state audiences.  As a result of attending a cultural event, attendees often eat dinner in local restaurants, pay for parking, buy gifts and souvenirs, and pay a babysitter. What’s more, attendees from out-of-town often stay overnight in a local hotel.  Nationally, event attendees spend an average of $31.47 on event-related expenses, and that does not include the price of a ticket.  In Connecticut, the figure is $27.70 per event attendee, with residents spending $23.78 on average and visitors spending 53% more than residents – $49.78 per event attendee. In Connecticut, 69% of visitors come for arts and cultural offerings.

Economic Impact One-Page Summaries

  • State of Connecticut: PDF
  • Middlesex County: PDF
  • Southeastern Connecticut: PDF
  • Fairfield County: PDF
  • Northwest Connecticut Region: PDF
  • Greater New Haven County: PDF

The National Picture

  • Nationwide, the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 reveals that the nonprofit arts industry produces $166.3 billion in economic activity
  • in 2015, resulting in $27.5 billion in federal, state and local tax revenues. In addition, it supports 4.6 million full-time equivalent jobs and generates $96.07 billion in household income.
  • “This study demonstrates that the arts are an economic and employment powerhouse both locally and across the nation,” said Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. “A vibrant arts and culture industry helps local businesses thrive and helps local communities become stronger and healthier places to live. Leaders who care about community and economic vitality can feel good about choosing to invest in the arts. Nationally as well as locally, the arts mean business.”
  • The Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study was conducted by Americans for the Arts and supported by The Ruth Lilly Fund of Americans for the Arts. Americans for the Arts’ local, regional, and statewide project partners contributed both time and financial support to the study. Financial information from organizations was collected in partnership with DataArts™, using a new online survey interface. For a full list of the communities who participated in the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study, visit www.AmericansForTheArts.org/AEP5Partners.

48-Hour Advocacy Push to Save the State Arts Budget!

Join the Connecticut Arts Alliance in an important 48-hour advocacy push on June 5 and 6 in support of continued State arts funding. Please do what you can to take part, and please share this with other friends and supporters of the arts, encouraging them to participate too. Easy-to-follow instructions and a unified message appear below.

THE PLAN:
The budget process is no small challenge, but we cannot keep quiet for fear of very real damage to the arts sector in Connecticut.

CALL TO ACTION:
Please help the voice of the arts be heard by getting the message below to both the State’s Administration and the Legislature.

WHEN:
Please take this specific action during the 48 HOURS of June 5 & 6, 2017.

WHO:
For your convenience, a list of legislative and administrative leaders appears at the bottom of this message, along with their contact information.

CAA_CTArtsMatter (revised)

PLEASE GET THIS MESSAGE TO STATE GOVERNMENT LEADERS:

CT Arts Matter!

  • The CT FY18 & FY19 budgets MUST INCLUDE funding for the ARTS COMMISSION (the Connecticut Office of the Arts).

Without this funding, Connecticut will:

  • lose valued Federal Matching Funds
  • lose much needed state revenue

We ask that you:

  • Fund the State “Arts Commission” line (Connecticut Office of the Arts) which leverages vital Federal NEA (National Endowment for the Arts) matching funds.
  • Support maintaining total arts funding of $5,183,087 (less than 0.02% of the proposed budget)

And keep in mind:

  • For every State dollar invested in the Arts, $7 in state revenue is generated. The arts are good for Connecticut’s economy!
  • The arts sector employed over 57,000 people in the arts and cultural industries in 2014, which represented 3.4% of all employment in the state.  The arts industry led utilities and transportation in both compensation and employment.

Thank you for your consideration!

More information on the advocacy positions of the Connecticut Arts Alliance is on its website HERE.

More information on the impact of the arts on the economy is on the Office of the Arts website HERE.

PLEASE EMAIL OR CALL 4 OR MORE OF THOSE LISTED BELOW:

EXECUTIVE BRANCH

Governor Malloy   governor.malloy@ct.gov   860-566-4840
Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman   ltgovernor.wyman@ct.gov   860-524-7384
DECD Commissioner Catherine Smith   Catherine.Smith@ct.gov

AND LEGISLATIVE LEADERSHIP

Sen. Len Fasano   Len.Fasano@cga.ct.gov   860-240-8871
Sen. Martin Looney   Looney@senatedems.ct.gov   860-240-0375
Sen. Paul Formica   paul.formica@cga.ct.gov   860-240-8371
Sen. Cathy Osten   Catherine.Osten@cga.ct.gov   860-240-0579
Rep. Toni Walker   toni.walker@cga.ct.gov   860-240-8585
Sen. Joan Hartley   hartley@senatedems.ct.gov   860-240-0006
Sen. Craig Miner   Craig.Miner@cga.ct.gov   860-240-8816
Rep. Henry Genga   henry.genga@cga.ct.gov   860-240-8585
Rep. Ezequiel Santiago   ezequiel.santiago@cga.ct.gov   860-240-8585
Rep. Chris Soto   Chris.Soto@cga.ct.gov   860-240-8585
Rep. Melissa Ziobron   Melissa.Ziobron@housegop.ct.gov   860-240-8700

AND FIND YOUR OWN LEGISLATORS HERE!