Pinellas Commission Urged to Restore Arts Funding After Years of Budget Cuts – Tampa Bay Times

 

Contact Tony Marrero at tmarrero@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8779. Follow @tmarrerotimes — Advocates who want the Pinellas County Commission to restore public funding for the arts are ready to make their pitch.

 The request: at least $300,000 in each of the next three years to boost marketing efforts and fund small grants to local artists and educational programs.

It’s a modest amount compared to prerecession levels, when the commission distributed $600,000 in annual grants and the county’s Tourist Development Council gave $750,000 to arts groups. And the proposal doesn’t seek to revive the county’s practice of awarding larger grants to established and emerging nonprofit arts organizations.

Better to start small and prove the worth of the investment, said Mitzi Gordon, executive director of Creative Pinellas, the county’s designated local arts agency.

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