Monday, September 17, 2007

CRAFTIVISM: cuts to essential services/arts funding

Received the following note from Lisa Pijuan-Nomura about an important demonstration taking place regarding municipal budget cuts. After receiving a slew of recent emails regarding possible cuts to arts funding, Lisa was inspired to connect with other artists equally disturbed by this possibility to organize this gathering.

If anyone is willing to make flags, puppets, or signs to animate this event, it would be much appreciated.

because it's tough as hell to swim in empty pools

Gathering at Nathan Phillips Square
Wednesday, September 19th
4 - 6 PM
please circulate widely

On WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 19TH, 4-6PM we are calling on ALL MEMBERS OF THE ARTS COMMUNITY AND ANYBODY ELSE to convene at NATHAN PHILLIPS SQUARE to make it clear that we will not tolerate cuts to our essential services and that we support the Land Transfer tax.

IT'S URGENT: the councillors will be meeting on the 20th to discuss this and we need to show our city officials that we are organized and strong in numbers and that we are horrified by the city’s deteriorating quality of life.

Please show your concern by attending WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 19th!
because it's tough as hell to swim in empty pools.

If you have suggestions for speakers, activities or want to help organize please contact:

Heather Haynes -
Darren O'Donnell -
Lisa Pijuan-Nomura -

- the land transfer tax is a one-time 2% cost payable only when you choose to buy a house; if implemented it will avert large annual property tax increases payable each and every year
- first time home buyers will receive a rebate for the land transfer tax
- only 6 cents of every tax dollar you pay goes to the city. The remaining 94 cents goes to the provincial and federal governments.

Here's a note from the President of the
Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild for more background re: cuts to arts funding & some action you can take. [Thanks to Akemi Nishedera of Kozo Studio Gallery for passing this on]

Dear Toronto CBBAG member:

What do you value about Toronto?

This note from me, as president of CBBAG to you, a Toronto arts supporter, is to alert you to the biggest crisis facing our city since amalgamation.

The papers have been overflowing with news of Toronto’s desperate financial state. In the next couple of months the city must either find significant new revenue sources or drastically reduce services.

As a Torontonian and an arts supporter, it is now time to make your voice heard.

If you believe, as I do, that city services, including investment in hundreds of arts organizations, are important – please:

Contact your city councillor (go to and let them know city services, especially the arts, are important to you

Vote Toronto – ask for a commitment from your provincial candidate to put adequate funding of Toronto at the top of their agenda

Join the Toronto Arts Coalition and find out more:
I support the arts in Toronto and I know that:

The arts are the creative engine which drives much of Toronto’s vibrancy and future economic growth.

The arts engage our youth offering opportunities for thousands of kids in at-risk neighbourhoods through programming in community centres, schools, libraries and parks.

Toronto is already trailing major North American cities in terms of arts funding: Vancouver, Montreal, New York, San Francisco and Chicago invest substantially more in their artists than does Toronto

The culture sector in Toronto employs 100,000+ and contributed over $8 billion to the city’s GDP in 2001 (Deloitte).
Each $1 investment by Toronto Arts Council (TAC) to the city’s arts organizations attracts, on average, an additional $17 in revenue

Arts events fuel restaurants, hotels, taxis – the entire tourism industry

More Torontonians attend arts events than sporting events every year

Toronto Arts Council’s entire budget costs each homeowner a mere $7 per year.

If you want to live in a city that refuses to close its community centres, shut its subway lines, limit access to skating rinks and reduce funding to its artists… let your political leaders know what you think.

Thank you.
Yours truly,

Scott Duncan, President, CBBAG


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