BC Arts Council receives record-high budget

By Cindy Brett

The BC government surprised the arts community last month when it announced a $24 million budget for the British Columbia Arts Council (BCAC) in 2013/14, a record high. $5.25 million of this funding will flow from the recently announced BC Creative Futures strategy, a government initiative developed to stimulate growth in the creative sector. Geared toward younger generations, the plan invests in many of the BCAC’s youth and education programs. Other funding comes from the ongoing Arts and Sports Legacy fund, a three-year initiative rolled out in 2010 that gives $10 million annually to arts and culture. Mirna Zagar, executive director of The Dance Centre in Vancouver, commented to The Dance Current, “Of course any funding increase is always welcome. However, this is not so much an increase as what seems to be an effort to restore funding and most likely can be viewed as a pre-election booster … This does not appear to really be new money – it’s more about how the existing funds are now being allocated. A good move is the fact that most of it now appears to be flowing back to the community through the BC Arts Council.” With funding not yet fully restored, and another $2 million still unallocated, the BC arts community will just have to wait and see what happens next.

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