Modest gains but at least levels are holding – well for now

Re-post from Nancy DeLucia, Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance

Last night at 11:45pm, Governor Corbett signed the general fund budget for FY 2012-13.

After months of negotiations, Governor Corbett and the General Assembly came to a consensus on a final “spend number” of $27.656 billion, which was $517 million more than the Governor had initially proposed in his February budget address.

Despite another year of difficult cuts and budget austerity, the Cultural Alliance is pleased to learn that cultural line items have either been level funded or modestly increased for the coming year. This modest funding is an important investment in a $2 billion cultural sector that helps attract visitors and tourists from around the globe to Pennsylvania and stimulates a vast creative economy.

Here are the final appropriations for the FY 2012-13 budget:

Appropriation

Status
Pennsylvania Council on the Arts saw both its granting programs and
administrative budgets remain level at $8,179,000 and $866,000 respectively.
Level
Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) had its General
Government Operations budget increased by $275,000 to $17.8 million, but its
museum assistance grants remain at zero for the third year in a row.
Increased
Tourism Marketing was increased by $1.810 million in FY 2012-13 to
a total of $5.810 million.
Increased
Zoos which had their funding zeroed out in the Governor’s proposal
also saw their funding restored to last year’s level.
Level

Still pending:

There is a proposal to increase the Educational Improvement Tax Credit by $25 million to a total $100 million. One-third of this increase would go to expand tax credits for Educational Improvement Organizations (EIOs). Many arts education and afterschool programs depend on EIO funds for the work they do.

Additionally, on June 4th, the Pennsylvania Senate commissioned the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee to conduct a Museum Study to measure the effects of prior funding cuts to PHMC and to our state’s museums. We are currently working with committee staff to provide information, research and advice.

About Steven Weisz

A Graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with advanced degrees in Psychology and Education is an entrepreneur and CEO for several for-profits and non-profit corporations in the region. He is also an adjunct professor of Psychology with several local Universities.

Steven is currently the CEO of Delaware Valley on Line, one of the first regional Internet Service Provides that now focuses on business-class web hosting, design, and internet marketing. He is president and founder of Rainbow Promotions Inc., a special events and entertainment agency established in the late 70’s, that services corporate and retail accounts both locally and nationally.

Steven is the Founder of PhiladelphiaDANCE.org, the largest web presence and resource for the dance community in the greater Philadelphia region, and the Founder and Editor of The Dance Journal. His involvement in the dance community extends to being Director of Graffito Works, an international platform for dancers and performing artists to create site-specific work and to make it readily accessible to the public.

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