Restoring Mandated Funding…A 10-year Arts Advocacy Crusade

Are we ready for 2020? You bet! In 2019, ArtPride pushed hard to correct a problem that has throttled funding for the arts, history, and tourism for 10 years. In December, through aggressive and strategic advocacy, Assembly Bill A3101 passed unanimously in the NJ State Legislature. This bill amends the 2003 law that created the NJ Hotel/Motel Occupancy Fee, which specifies funding levels for state...

Unintended Consequences of Legislation – S4204 and Independent Contractors

S4204 /A5936, introduced on November 7, will codify how the government determines whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. This bill is an attempt to increase the focus on misclassification of workers, to not only protect them, but to increase state income tax revenues, and bolster unemployment insurance and workers compensation. A similar law in California, AB5, will go into...

An Arts Advocacy Journey

Arts Advocate is never a title I thought I would hear when someone described me. Growing up, I always enjoyed being in plays and watching a few musicals, but never once did I think I would be getting on a train to D.C. 1-2 times a year and talk to members of U.S. Congress about the importance of the arts. Hello! My name is Zach Bates. I am an alumnus of the Gloucester County Institute of...

ArtPride New Jersey Offers Testimony at NJ Open Public Budget Hearings

Each year, the New Jersey Office of Legislative Services offers the public an opportunity to bring budget concerns to the Assembly Appropriations Committee and the Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee. ArtPride trustee Jeremy Johnson testified before the Assembly Committee, and ArtPride staff member Ann Marie Miller testified before both committees. This was an opportunity to remind elected...

The HeART of Downtown Renaissance

What happens when you get five business leaders in a room filled with hungry learners who want to know the secrets to making their downtowns come alive? This was the scene at the recent New Jersey League of Municipalities Conference where ArtPride and the Housing & Community Development Network of New Jersey collaborated to showcase success stories in progress in Hackensack, Atlantic City, Trenton...

New Jersey Celebrates National Arts in Education Week

It’s back to school time and that means this week is National Arts in Education Week. It is such a critical time to show your support for arts education in New Jersey. Arts education creates not only artists but well-rounded humans that thrive in creative workplace environments. Now, if you aren’t familiar with this national celebration, here is a little background provided by our friends at...

Never Stop Asking Questions

Five years ago, I put a personal and institutional moratorium on making theatre. coLAB Arts had a massive question that had been hanging in the air for the five years since the organization first started: Why do we exist? Why does there need to be another loosely held together group of emerging interdisciplinary artists in New Jersey making work for themselves? And why New Brunswick? We had...

What is the Future of the Arts?

Nearly 300 arts professionals from across New Jersey gathered at Princeton University’s Lewis Arts complex and McCarter Theatre Center on June 7 for the Thrive Arts Conference to explore that very question. Thrive is presented every other year through a partnership among ArtPride New Jersey, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts , and the Lewis Center or the Arts at Princeton . The fourth...

Celebrate All 48 Blocks of Atlantic City

What is “48 Blocks Atlantic City? Atlantic City is fairly small as cities go. It stretches only 48 blocks from the inlet to neighboring Ventnor City. Tucked within those 48 blocks, in the shadows of towering casino-hotels, is a community of wonderfully diverse and creative residents. “48 Blocks Atlantic City” is a weekend-long celebration of Atlantic City’s arts, history, culture, and community...

The New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival

The New Jersey State Teen Arts Festival will celebrate the third year of its revival on May 30 th , 31 st and June 1 st at Ocean County College in Toms River. Thousands of students and teachers from all 21 counties, along with professional artists and leaders in arts advocacy will celebrate the important role the arts play in enriching all of New Jersey at this three-day, state-wide arts festival....

Action Alerts

ACT NOW – Contact NJ legislators re continued pandemic relief for arts & culture

S2800/A4233 was recently introduced to support New Jersey’s creative industries with $70 million of federal American Rescue Plan (ARPA) funds still available to the State of New Jersey.

Cultural organizations were among the very first to close and the last to reopen when pandemic restrictions eased. Most continue to struggle financially with decreased revenue as audiences have not yet returned to pre-pandemic capacity levels. Earlier federal funding has long since expired.

Funds will provide grants to nonprofit and for-profit arts and cultural organizations through the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) to recoup lost revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and help...
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Support the Creative Economy Bills
The U.S. Congress is currently considering seven bills that will support the creative industries in recovery. Many offer ways for federal agencies to expand services and opportunities to benefit individual artists and cultural organizations.

Together, these bills map a new, more equitable and impactful policy landscape for creative businesses and workers and, if passed, would improve the lives of all Americans by expanding opportunity for creative workers and boosting the U.S. economy.

Please ask your member of Congress to cosponsor any or all of these bills.
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