Funding cuts for the arts in Victoria & NSW

In Victoria, Arts Vic has been advising all funded organisations that they face a cut of 3.5% plus no indexation in their interim funding for 2013 which is seen as transitional funding if ongoing support is offered at the conclusion of the funding review

& across the border in NSW

Sydney’s largest cultural institutions may have to cut staff and programs after the NSW state government announced millions of dollars worth of cuts to their operating costs, The Age has reported.

The dip in funding for operations is a huge blow for the Art Gallery of NSW, which relies upon government grants for over half its total expenditure. AGNSW already spends the majority of their annual government grant on salaries.

AGNSW staff have been asked to cut costs after the new budget saw its annual operations grant cut by roughly $1 million, reported The Age.

Further blows include $461,000 worth of cuts to the Sydney Opera House 2012-13 budget; $500,000 of the Australian Museum’s 2012-13 grant; and $1 million of the Powerhouse Museum’s annual budget, which stretches across the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney Observatory and Castle Hill.

The Age reported Art Gallery of NSW director Dr Michael Brand as saying that AGNSW was currently brainstorming ways to deal with the cuts.

“The board of trustees has approved what I believe to be a very sound and appropriate process for finding the required savings,” Dr Brand told The Age.

“Most importantly, we are engaging directly with our staff as part of this process and soliciting suggestions from them as well. It is too early to say where the cuts will be made but we will be fighting hard to maintain our levels of service to our public.”

The Sydney Opera House, which recently appointed corporate advisor and former Belvoir Street Theatre chair Louise Herron as CEO, faces the cuts on top of multimillion-dollar construction work and plans to rebuild the iconic theatre.

While the NSW state government arts funding is up $377 million from last year’s $345 million budget, the government’s 2013 Arts Funding Program for specific arts and cultural programs and projects was down to $57 million from last year’s $58.2 million.

(Source – Arts Hub)

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