Friday, April 2
Keep Calm and Advocate On
End of Florida Legislative Week 5
What Our Members Are Doing
Restarting Florida’s Economy: Strong State Support for Florida’s Arts and Culture Industry When the pandemic hit last year, it was said that the arts would be the first to close and the last to re-open. This unfortunately has proven to be accurate. However, arts re-opening is soon to be a reality. This is why strong State funding for the arts is so important right now. 
Joyfully, we are hearing that there is light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. For Florida’s non-profit Arts and Culture Industry, we are planning for lights to be turned back on in our theaters, museums and arts centers - and to see audiences fully return, in-person! It is essential for arts organizations to have adequate resources to re-emerge and to help people engage in safe, exciting and family-friendly arts activities.
As Florida’s elected officials grapple with the budget and with meaningful ways to use its federal American Rescue Plan Act monies, we are counting on their allocating the much-needed funding for arts organizations to restart their programs and help restart Florida’s economy. When arts institutions closed and events stopped last year, it had the devastating effect of stopping all tickets sales, admissions receipts and subscriptions. Florida reported over $220 million in losses and COVID-related expenses and 20,455 Florida arts workers/jobs terminated, furloughed or not filled.
Helping arts organizations now is helping restore thousands of jobs and offering the kinds of arts events and activities that contribute to Florida’s stature as a great place to work, visit and raise a family. This takes meaningful, yet relatively modest, State financial support.
This is essential not just for the more than 227,000 arts workers who have jobs as curators and security guards, and stagehands and accountants. It also is a lifeline for millions of arts attendees and for helping to restart Florida’s overall economy.
If you think about it, going to the theater, to an outdoor arts festival or to a museum is a key indicator of economic well-being. On the way, millions of Florida arts-goers spend money in restaurants and shops and animate our neighborhoods, making them exciting and safe.
Just as importantly, Florida’s image around the world has been energized by our growth as a destination for diverse, world-class arts institutions and events. Our state has great recreational opportunities, enviable climate, distinctive cuisine and restaurants, and an outstanding infrastructure for business and tourism. What gives us a competitive edge is having one of the world’s most diverse and dynamic arts and cultural calendars, coast to coast to coast. 
The arts are still occasionally thought about in outdated and inaccurate stereotypes. Here in 21st century Florida, in cities and towns across our State, the arts are museums offering educational programs for families and kids, theaters presenting free and affordable performances, and outdoor festivals celebrating communities’ unique character and cultures. The arts are accessible and affordable for every Floridian and for every visitor to our extraordinary State.
The tremendous advantage we have is that the Department of State Division of Cultural Affairs has thoroughly reviewed and recommended grant support for hundreds of arts activities throughout Florida. This ensures that State arts grants are sound investments that produce the economic dividends that are so important for getting us out of the pandemic. And magnifying this investment, every State dollar allocated for in the arts generates another $9 of matching funds.
We have an incredible opportunity for the arts to help us find our way to a post-COVID-19 world. Florida’s elected leaders can help the arts help our State by allocating meaningful levels of funds to re-energize arts organizations who will work hard on re-activating our economy. The State’s investing in the arts is an investment in restarting our lives, our economy and our future.
Florida Cultural Alliance (FCA) is a not-for-profit organization created in 1983 to develop an informed and engaged statewide non-partisan advocacy network among arts and culture organizations, individuals, artists, businesses and local, state, and federal policymakers and staff. This network would strategically collaborate to increase state’s investment in Florida artists and arts and cultural organizations and elevate the industry, as a whole to its rightful place as an integral element to the vibrancy of what is now the world’s 17th largest economy.
In last week's e-blast, I shared with you the initial appropriations recommendations for Division of Cultural Affairs Grants coming out of the House and Senate subcommittees. It was a strong starting position and helped define the direction and content of our messaging for the next two weeks.
After you've 1) thanked the legislators on these committees: House Infrastructure & Tourism Appropriations Subcommittee (ITA) & Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Tourism, and Economic Development (ATD) for their hard work and recommendations ..............
2) Ask the legislators on these committees: House Appropriations & Senate Appropriations protect the Senate ATD Sub-Committee's recommendation and consider the recent increase in non-recurring funds to try to fully fund Culture and Museum Grants.
3) Ask the legislators on these committees: House Appropriations & Senate Appropriations to use the House ITA Sub-Committee's recommendation for Culture Builds Florida Grants. It was 100%!
4) Ask the legislators on these committees: House Appropriations & Senate Appropriations to consider the recent inflow of non-recurring funds as a unique opportunity to fully fund the Cultural Facilities Grants; increasing arts and culture accessibility by increasing and improving capacity.
This past week (Legislative week 5), House and Senate Full Appropriations Committees compiled the recommendations from their respective appropriations subcommittees and began the tedious task of reconciling them to a balanced budget. At the same time, other standing committees in both chambers continued to address bills, all of which must make their way through appropriations to assess any (if any) fiscal impact they may have on the state budget.

As new demands on the budget begin appearing, it will be extremely important that we have successfully illustrated the exponential and divergent value of your grant funded programs to the State of Florida.

It is not too late. In fact, it is the opportune time to let your legislators know you appreciate their work, empathize with them and encourage them as they pave a creative path to resilience.

We maintain Arts and Culture are Critical to Florida's Recovery.
This was a part of last week's e-blast. Changes this week are in purple.
Nonprofit Taxation / Nonprofit Property Tax Exemption
In the Senate: SB 1214 (Gruters)       
Committee Referrals:
Community Affairs (CA) Passed 3.10.21
Finance and Tax (FT) Passed 3.25.21
Appropriations (AP) TBD   
IN the House: HB 889  (Borrero)
Committee Referrals:
Local Administration & Veterans Affairs Subcommittee: passed 03/23/21 w/ Committee Substitute (final action)
Ways & Means Committee: (passed 4/01/21)
State Affairs Committee: TBD

Arts Education Updates:
The ACE (Arts for a Complete Education)
In the Senate: LFIR 1032 (Gruters) (LIFR means Local Initiative Funding Request)
In the House: HB 3285 (McFarland)
Committee Referrals:
PreK-12 Appropriations Subcommittee: TBD
Appropriations Committee:TBD

Seal of Fine Arts
In the Senate: SB 1740 (Rouson)
Commitee referrals:
Education (ED): passed 3.30.21
Approps Subcommittee on Ed (AED): TBD
Appropriations (AP):TBD

In the House: HB 1375 (Diamond)
House Referrals
2ndary Ed & Career Dev Subcommittee: TBD
PreK-12 Approps Subcommittee: TBD
Ed & Employment Committee: TBD

Arts and Second Language
In the Senate: LFIR 1655 (Bracy) (LIFR means Local Initiative Funding Request)
In the House: HB 2051 (Morales)
House Referrals
PreK-12 Approps Subcom: Favorable 3/17/21
Appropriations Committee: TBD
Applications for 2022-2023 General Program Support, Specific Cultural Project, Cultural Facilities and Cultural Endowments will be accepted April 1, 2021 - June 1, 2021 on Click HERE for more information about our grant programs.

How to Apply for Cultural Facilities Grants
How to Apply for General Program Support and Specific Cultural Project Grants
The GPS/SCP Application Criteria Webinar Series provides insight into each of the three judging criteria panelists use to score applications.
Quality of Offerings
Impact Part I
Impact Part II: Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Access
Track Record
Hillsborough: The Arts Council of Hillsborough County is hosting a workshop for artists Tuesday, May 4th at 5PM (EDT). They invite you to attend: Panel Discussion: Achieving Funding Success
Hear local artists who have all received funding from the Professional Development for Artists Grant. These high-scoring former grantees will offer tips and answer any questions to help applicants succeed at writing their grant application! They highly encourage any interested artists to participate and ask questions. The session will be recorded for those unable to participate in person. Register here

May 2nd from 2, noon - 5pm, a Pre-Mother's Day event featuring jewelry by local artists, artisanal chocolates, and light refreshments.
Jewelry artists: Wanda Birchfield, Lonni Hopkins and Joyce Howell
Chocolate artist: Viktoria Richards
This event is free, but registration is encouraged as space is limited.
A new exhibit is also open now. "When the Train Comes Along": Booker T. Washington at the Tampa Bay Casino exhibit explores the impact of Washington's 1912 address in Tampa - a mostly forgotten chapter of local history. This significant exhibit is curated by Dr. Charles McGraw Groh.

Miami-Dade: Karen Peterson & Dancers will be presenting a new work Sunday April 11th at 4PM at Pinecrest Gardens. Eventbrite tickets are available here.

The 24th Miami Jewish Film Festival will be April 14-29th and entirely free this year. Everyone can watch as many of the films as they like at no cost -- and this year they're presenting over 140 premieres, the largest film program ever assembled by a Jewish fest. Free tickets available here.

YoungArts premieres Desmond Richardson’s Without Further Delay, a virtual dance performance bringing nine 2021 YoungArts award winners from across the country for a special collaboration On April 8th @8PM EDT.

Commissioned by YoungArts in partnership with Aon, the performance investigates the current moment by exploring elements of isolation, confinement, communality and perseverance. Choreographer Richardson has been hailed by The New York Times as among the greatest dancers of his time. He is a 1986 YoungArts award winner, the co-artistic director of Complexions Contemporary Ballet and a Tony Award nominee. The music for Without Further Delay was composed by fellow 1980 alumnus and Grammy Award winner Terence Blanchard. Anna Deavere Smith, actress, playwright, professor and featured mentor in Anna Deavere Smith: A YoungArts Masterclass on HBO will give a special introduction prior to the performance

Monroe: Florida Keys History and Discovery Center has acquired a preeminent artifact. The tombstone of Captain John Jacob "Wrecker" Housman. “Once considered the Wrecker King of Indian Key, local history cannot be told without including his story. Born on Staten Island, New York, in 1799, he sailed into the Keys in 1822. Running afoul of the Florida Reef, the encounter would forever alter the history of Florida wrecking, Monroe County, and Indian Key. The rest of the story, well, will be part of the new permanent exhibit.” Brad Bertelli, Center Curator
St Johns: St Johns Cultural Council is Calling to Artists of Photography: Local photographers are invited to submit digital images of iconic places in St. Johns County for the upcoming 200th Anniversary Photography Exhibition. Images will be evaluated by a selection panel and photographers will receive a stipend for each image selected for the exhibition. Deadline April 30th Details Here
Reminder to those who registered for National Arts Action Summit. It's next week: April 4-9, 2021
From AFTA:
  1. Thanks to the continued commitment from this year's organizational partners—and in response to the financial challenges that many are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic—unlimited opportunities for full registration support are now available. This waives the registration fee for anyone who would otherwise be unable to participate in the 2021 National Arts Action Summit. Learn more here!
  2. We've just posted our exciting agenda full of virtual mainstage and training sessions sure to invigorate your arts policy and advocacy knowledge. Check out the agenda and start to plan which sessions you want to attend live! 
  3. State Captains are scheduling meetings with members of Congress for Arts Advocacy Week (April 12-16) where advocates will take the knowledge and data they learned at the National Arts Action Summit and put it into practice with elected officials. Learn who your State Captain is and connect with them now!
  4. Not able to attend these virtual sessions live? Don't worry! All sessions will be recorded and will be available to registrants to watch on demand within 24 hours. You'll have access to over a dozen arts policy and advocacy sessions to watch anytime.
  5. Your voice is critical to advancing the arts and creative economy in America. The arts and culture sector remains in crisis and we need everyone at the table to make a difference. Make sure your community is represented!
Learn compelling up-to-the-minute data, the latest in arts policy, and how to effectively engage decisionmakers to support the arts, arts education, the creative economy, and much, much more! 
Thank you all for all you do!