Thursday, August 21, 2008

Arts Advocacy Update LV

The content below is from Americans for the Arts' Cultural Policy Listserv, email blast of August 20, 2008:

S.L. County pushes arts boards to diversify
Salt Lake Tribune (UT), 8/19/2008
"Salt Lake County's leading cultural-arts attractions have received a high-power nudge, not a mandate, to diversify their governing boards - now dominated by east-siders. The County Council adopted a resolution Tuesday urging entertainment venues such as the Utah Symphony, Pioneer Theatre and Discovery Gateway children's museum to appoint leaders from each of the county's six political districts. 'It is only fair that since county taxpayers contribute that money,' GOP Councilman David Wilde said, 'they should have more input into how that money is spent.'"
Yeah, uh huh. And we'll tell you what kind of art to create, too. Damn Republicans. Back to their old tricks.

Gov. O'Malley Invites Public Input on Imagine Maryland, 8/15/2008
"Governor Martin O’Malley today invited public input on the recently unveiled Imagine Maryland, a community collaboration and cultural planning initiative to identify opportunities and ideas that will enhance the role of the arts in Maryland. The Governor is encouraging all Marylanders to participate in an on-line survey or attend one of eight upcoming arts forums being hosted by the Maryland State Arts Council."
There had better be some stuff in there about the Maryland Shakespeare Festival.

How Can Arts Leaders Play an Active Role in Cultural Planning Initiatives in Their Local Communities?
CultureWork, July 2008
Tina Rinaldi shares her experiences and reflects on serving as a novice chair for a community cultural planning committee. Drawing on her time on this advisory committee, Rinaldi provides an overview of the challenges and successes for citizen-led cultural review. What does it mean for the arts and culture professional to work in a forum with a high level of community participation? What are the roles of each stakeholder? Rinaldi addresses these and other questions of this dynamic and exigent forum for municipal cultural engagement.
Great stuff for the "How do I get involved?" crowd.

Private sector can play bigger role in public diplomacy
Buffalo News (NY), 8/18/2008
Jay T. Snyder, a member of the U. S. Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy, recommends that the next president form a public-private Institute for Public Diplomacy. "Poll after poll continues to show that people around the world admire, value and want American culture, products and know-how, none of which is in the dominion of the U. S. government. Instead, we should encourage the private sector to do a greater job of exporting these goods and ideas to those who want and need them. . . . The next U.S. president should make an effort to consolidate and guide [existing public diplomacy] measures under a single roof that should span government and the private sector."
Very good advice. And if Actors' Equity would enter the 21st century, theatres could use B roll to promote its shows overseas.

Ban media cross-ownership
Seattle Times, 8/14/2008
"The U.S. House of Representatives has a chance to do what it would not in 2003: take a stand against media consolidation, which is one of the greatest threats to democracy. The U.S. Senate worked in the public's interest when it passed a 'resolution of disapproval' of media consolidation in May. The House has been content to sit on its companion piece, which would kill a new Federal Communications Commission rule that essentially lifts the media cross-ownership ban. . . . A close reading of the current rule shows it is filled with loopholes that would allow for consolidation in almost any market — small, medium and large."
Rupert Murdoch loves close readings...

Draft of 2008 Democratic National Convention Platform Includes Arts
Americans for the Arts website, 8/18/2008
The Democratic National Convention Committee recently released a draft of their guiding principles for this year’s convention in Denver, August 25–28. In the “Renewing the American Community” section of the platform, legislators, party leaders, and policymakers included a specific policy section on the arts, citing the need to increase support for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, arts in education, and cultural exchange. The language in the platform is the most comprehensive language on the importance of the arts and culture this political season, thanks in large part to Americans for the Arts Action Fund’s work with committee members to include statements from its ArtsVote2008 Pro-Arts Policy Brief.
Yay! This is good.

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