Orchestras Canada’s Advocacy Committee for 2015-16 has been hard at work in the last few weeks, developing a work plan for the year, and preparing our annual pre-budget brief to the federal Standing Committee on Finance.
Although the Standing Committee was dissolved when the writ was issued for the October 19 election, we don’t feel that our labour was wasted: the five recommendations developed by OC’s committee will, we believe, create excellent fodder for good discussions “at the door” with candidates from all political parties in the coming weeks, and we always value the chance to clarify orchestras’ contributions and their needs. Finally, while we need to be nimble and responsive to shifting circumstances, we think this work will help guide our efforts over the next year.
Orchestras Canada’s five recommendations to the Standing Committee for 2015-2016 include the following:
- Increase the Canada Council for the Arts’ Parliamentary appropriation by $35 million in 2016, with a long-term goal of reaching $300 million.
- Enable international market access by increasing investment to provide $25 million for strategic development of international arts markets.
- Implement the proposed Stretch Tax Credit for Charitable Donations
- Ensure that arts and culture infrastructure projects (renovation/retro-fitting, equipment purchase, or new construction) be eligible for funding consideration through existing or future federal infrastructure investment programs.
- Expand the current Children’s Arts Tax Credit to include the cost of tickets for children attending live arts performances.
Our sincere thanks to the members of the Advocacy Committee:
Harry Swain (Victoria Symphony)
Meghan Unterschultz (Edmonton Symphony/Winspear Centre)
Shannon Whidden (Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra)
Matthew Jones (Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber Orchestra)
Thérèse Boutin (Orchestre symphonique de Québec)
Angela Birdsell (arts consultant, Fredericton, NB)
Katherine Carleton (Orchestras Canada/Orchestres Canada), ex officio
Micheline McKay (Micheline McKay and Associates), ex officio
The Canadian Arts Coalition has just released its Election Toolkit, an attractive and useful compilation of arts facts, resources, and advice that we commend to you highly. You can explore it here.