OFTA Board Endorses Plan

Oklahomans For The Arts Endorses the Step Up Oklahoma Plan

The Oklahomans for the Arts Board voted this week to endorse the Step Up Oklahoma plan.

Oklahomans for the Arts acknowledges this effort to increase sustainable revenues for our state as a first step toward stabilizing the budget.

As these large agency budget challenges have dominated decision making, many important and focused services that build community, ensure a creative workforce and stimulate local economies have been cut.

The Oklahoma Arts Council has been cut 46% over the past eight years. These cuts have negatively impacted arts education statewide and limited the economic and community enhancing impact of arts and cultural organizations, especially in rural areas.  Recent research shows a $6 state and local tax return on each $1 invested by the Oklahoma Arts Council.

By beginning the process of addressing Oklahoma’s structural budget deficit the Step Up Oklahoma plan will allow for deliberate efforts to be undertaken to begin the critical process of restoring the funding of essential smaller agencies such as the Oklahoma Arts Council.

“We believe that only a partnership of state and local government and private donors can assure the vibrant health of arts agencies and activities in communities of all sizes throughout the state. The Oklahoma Arts Council is that backbone public agency.”

—   Jim Tolbert, Board Chair for Oklahomans for the Arts

More on economic impact study results: www.ok4arts/economy

Julia Kirt