B.C. budget hikes arts council funding by $15 million over three years

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      In its 2018 budget announced today, the B.C. government has boosted B.C. Arts Council grants by $15 million over three years.

      During the unveiling of the NDP’s first full budget today, finance minister Carole James said that amount will be incrementally added to the $24 million already allocated annually to the council.

      The budget will also grant $3 million over three years to Creative BC for the film, music, publishing, and digital-media sectors.

      The Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services had recommended to the Legislative Assembly that the provincial government double investment to the B.C. Arts Council over four years. It also recommended increased funding to Creative BC to expand the BC Film Commission’s capacity, renew the BC Music fund, and provide programs to support BC’s domestic film, television, digital, and other creative industries. 

      The B.C. Arts Council provides arm's-length funding to artists and organizations through a peer-evaluation process.

      The B.C. Liberals had frozen the B.C. Arts Council’s budget at $24 million annually since 2013-14, when it received a $7.2-million boost before the last election.