In the spring of 2005, CAA held its first major event, Arts Day at the Capitol, where both then executive director of the new Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism and Governor Rell addressed arts advocates. Since its inception, the CAA has led efforts statewide to educate and advocate for the arts through legislative hearings, meetings of arts advocates and letter writing campaigns. When several members of the board left the field in 2006, the organization was inactive for a period. Two organizing meetings were held in the summer and fall of 2007, with a steering committee appointed to reorganize and activate the organization. In 2008, the by-laws were rewritten, and a new board put in place. A larger, more diverse board was elected, representative of all regions of the state, large and small arts organizations, arts professionals and patrons.
CAA Accomplishments Since 2008
October 10, 2008 – CAA Board Members met with Senator Don Williams to discuss the future of the State of Connecticut and its commitment to funding of arts, culture and tourism.
November 26, 2008 – CAA forwards narrative proposal to Senator Don Williams regarding recommendations on how the legislature may address Arts and Culture funding for the future.
February 17, 2009 – CAA Board members attended Appropriations Committee Hearings and testified on behalf of all arts organizations for increased funding and support to state arts, cultural and tourism agencies.
CAA Board Members met, over the past 6 months, collectively and individually, with key legislators to address issues related to State of Connecticut budget and its impact on arts and culture funding.
CAA actively worked to get a clear understanding of the implications of the Senate Bill 932, “Amusement and Recreation Services”, which could have potentially eliminated Sales Tax exemption for not-for-profits. It was determined that regardless of the bill, federally recognized not-for-profits would still remain tax exempt.
June 4, 2009 – A Press Release was issued and sent out to all major media outlets titled “CAA says it’s outrageous to severely reduce or suspend funding for the arts.” The Press Release was signed by CAA Board members and additionally sent to top legislative leaders involved with the budget negotiations. It subsequently received local and national attention through a variety of media outlets such as artsdaily.org and the Republican American.
June 22, 2009 a mass electronic letter campaign “A Letter From Concerned Arts Organizations” was signed by over 160 arts and cultural organizations and mailed out to over 100,000 individuals and supporters of the arts.
CAA begins to build a database of the State’s Arts, Cultural and Tourism organizations to promote improved electronic communication.
CAA continues to actively review all budget proposals presentation by the Governor’s office and the Legislative branch as it relates to Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism and Department of Economic and Community Development.
In are effort to create an efficient organizational structure, CAA continues to capitalize on its economy of scale, by utilizing local and regional resources through its memberships to further enhance the CAA mission and establish a grassroots constituency to promotes its endeavors.
CAA is actively working to establish a broader web presence and an easily managed and self-subscribing database for improved and effective communications to its arts and culture constituency in the state.
Presented an Arts Advocacy Day at the Capitol in the Spring of 2010
Met with CT candidates for governor in Fall 2010 to discuss their arts positions