March 2nd, 2018

NDP bill would guarantee 1% of government expenditures on culture and heritage

HALIFAX – A new bill introduced by the NDP Caucus today would set the bar for spending on the creative economy to guarantee governments support arts and culture in Nova Scotia.

"Our province has lots of talented and creative individuals and organizations. Supporting their efforts is good for both our economy and the cultural fabric of our province,” said Susan Leblanc, NDP spokesperson for Communities Culture and Heritage. “While our province’s actors, writers, musicians, and other artists have managed to do a lot with very little, chronic underfunding has limited the potential of Nova Scotia’s creative sector.”

The bill would ensure that funding at a certain level would be available for artists in Nova Scotia. The 2017-2018 budget had $10.5 billion in total expenditures, 1 per cent of that would be $105 million. The current total budget for Communities, Culture and Heritage is $84 Million or 0.8 per cent of total expenditures.

“Government support is vital to the existence of the arts and culture sector. We are the story-tellers of our community, chronicling the lives of all Nova Scotians," said Jeremy Webb, Artistic Director of Neptune Theatre. “Setting a guaranteed amount of government funding means artists in the province could feel confident that their work is valued here.”

– 30 –