Thursday, March 10, 2011

Art and The Cherokee Tradition

Principal Chief Michell Hicks of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians

“There is no word for art in the Cherokee language because art was such an integral part of our way of life it was incorporated into every aspect of our existence. Our state has also realized that vibrant art communities create jobs, invite tourism and give our people a higher quality of life. I believe it is important for the state to continue funding arts projects for the well being of our residents and visitors alike.”

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

On Our Minds: State Arts Funding

There is little use in pretending we have anything on our minds but the impending battle for state arts funding. 

A recent blog by Seth Godin reflects what we all know: that the most powerful form of persuasion is person-to-person. Maybe you don't know a Legislator. No matter, you can write a letter to the editor. Maybe you are intimidated by a political call. Come to Arts Day and see for yourself that this game is fun. Think it is no use and that minds are made up? Think again of the individual that had to convince another that the world is not flat.

Our fight is for $6.6 million in grants funding that is allocated to all 100 counties through the North Carolina Arts Council's grants programs. This is .0003 of the state budget, and yet the money reaches 9 million+ attendees. For every $1 of state funds, local arts organizations leverage an additional $17 that multiplies throughout the economy. And half of the $6.6 million is returned to the state in the $3.3 million of income tax paid by the 2,266 employees of arts organizations directly funded by the Arts Council.

We have the facts. It's your stories and passion we need, plus your attention and willingness to take action.
  • Like us on Facebook
  • Write a letter to the editor between now and March 22
  • Follow all Call to Action alerts
  • Get informed. Check out updated information on the Advocacy and Arts Day pages at (new website launch coming this month!)
  • Register for Arts Day

The North Carolina nonprofit arts sector provides essential services more effectively, efficiently, and with greater accountability than can be provided by government. These services include jobs creation, skilled workers, improved public education, revitalized towns and communities, and a thriving cultural tourism industry.

Our position: Arts North Carolina believes legislators should make informed and responsible decisions in the current budget process based on the fact that a small investment in the arts yields a high return. We also believe that the proposed 10% reductions to grants programs in Governor Perdue's budget is reasonable, but that any additional cuts will deeply affect arts infrastructure in our state. If you are willing to work with us, we could sure use your help.