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Reflecting on Our Advocacy Campaign Victories

Bethann Steiner, Public Affairs Director

Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra Members
Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra Members

In March 2021 Mass Cultural Council unveiled its Power of Culture Advocacy Campaign to bolster the cultural sector, calling for robust state budget, bond, and policy investments to support arts and culture across the Commonwealth.

Throughout this legislative session Beacon Hill has repeatedly partnered with Mass Cultural Council to secure public investments into arts and culture, notably:

  • Record high state budget spending in support of the sector through Mass Cultural Council in both FY22 ($21.4M) and FY23 ($23.4M)
  • A historic, one-time $60.1M investment providing pandemic recovery assistance to Massachusetts artists and cultural organizations
  • Sustained support for Massachusetts’ cultural facilities and infrastructure through the Baker-Polito Administration’s FY22 and FY23 Capital Spending Plans, both of which invest $10M into the Cultural Facilities Fund
  • Passage of H. 3378, An Act expanding membership opportunities in local cultural councils

Due to these victories, Mass Cultural Council is tasked with the enormous and amazing direction to equitably invest almost $100 million in state dollars into the cultural sector this fiscal year!

We note with appreciation that these advocacy victories were secured due to the ongoing partnership and collaborations we enjoy with our partners at MASSCreative and Mass Humanities, as well as strong support for our mission across the membership of both the House of Representatives and Senate. We would be amiss if we did not specifically name and thank the dynamic chairs and staff of the Joint Committee on Tourism, Arts & Cultural Development, State Senator Ed Kennedy (D- Lowell) and State Representative Carole Fiola (D- Fall River) who never failed to support our requests and proposals and provide guidance and support throughout key legislative debates and decision making moments.

The 2023-2024 legislative session begins in January, and with it thousands of new bills, a new FY24 budget cycle, and a FY24 capital spending plan will come into play. Mass Cultural Council looks forward to working with its advocacy and legislative partners, as well as the incoming Healey-Driscoll Administration, to continue to secure strong public investment and support for the cultural sector.

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