Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Dear Friends and Arts Supporters,
Louisiana Citizens for the Arts (formerly Louisiana Partnership for Arts Advocacy) has been mobilizing individual artists, cultural organizations, and widespread arts enthusiasts for more than 19 years. The organization has been key to buildinga strong grassroots network of well-informed arts advocates, who in turn have been successful in persuading Louisiana's legislature to invest in arts funding. We adopted a new name to better portray our mission: Louisiana Citizens for the Arts. The new name correctly identifies the fuel that drives its establishment ─ you, Louisiana's citizens.
Last month, Governor Jindal released the proposed executive budget which reduces this past fiscal year's arts funding by 33%. To have any chance of restoring this funding, we must have the participation of every self-proclaimed arts advocate in the state. Compared with funding levels from fiscal year 2009, the proposed budget slashes arts funding by nearly 60%.
In years past, when we needed you most, you sent more than 40,000 emails to Louisiana legislators. In response, the Senate Finance Committee listened. When you told our legislators that arts funding should be considered an economic development tool and not just a quality of life issue, they heard you and restored funding to the arts industry in Louisiana. This year, we'll need your help again! In addition to writing legislators, you can join us on May 16th for Arts Advocacy Day in the Capitol's rotunda. More information on this lively demonstration of the value of our creative communities will come soon.
If you haven't yet joined as a member, please consider doing so. Visit our website to join or to find out more information about the Louisiana Citizens for the Arts at www.louisianacitizensforthearts.org. Individual membership starts at just $25 per year. Considering how much good comes from this organization, $25 is a steal!
Christie Weeks, Chair
Matt Young, Vice Chair for Advocacy
Kevin Hayes, Legislative Lobbyist
The Louisiana Citizens for the Arts is supported solely by donations from citizens, businesses, and organizations who believe the arts are essential to our Louisiana economy, identity, and way of life.