February 2, 2015 - Claire Hopkinson Deputation

Toronto City Hall, Committee Room 1 Claire Hopkinson, Director & CEO, Toronto Arts Council

Thank you Budget Chief and members of the Committee.

I am delighted to join you once again to present the arts community’s perspective on the city budget.  Following me today will be a member of our Board, Gaetane Verna. 

First of all, it is my great pleasure to thank you and all members of City Council for beginning to implement the approved arts funding increases.  The impact of this increase to our budget cannot be over-emphasized. It has allowed TAC to respond to priorities developed over years of intensive community consultation, to begin to stabilize some arts organizations, to fund many artists and organizations for the first time and to crease access to the arts with some major partnerships with Toronto Public Library, Toronto Heritage sites and others, including: 

A program with ArtReach Toronto providing support for 30 youth led arts projects each year thus building skills and confidence in young people
TDSB - Arts in the Schools – a program where students have been given the chance to create art with the mentorship of professional artists.  In Year One, over 5000 students participated in this program; 63 artists were given mentorship and residency opportunities in 42 schools, all of which were outside the downtown core. 

Small and mid-size arts organizations throughout the city have gained valuable fundraising skills through a matching grants program offered in partnership with Business for the Arts.  In the first year of the program, TAC’s grant of $250,000 allowed 77 arts organizations to raise a total of $1.2 million in sponsorship funds – 60% of which came from first-time supporters of the arts for a total ROI of 5.

Through a partnership with the Pan/ParaPan Am Games, as well as our ongoing grants programs, TAC has been able to offer over $600,000 in support for 30 arts organizations that will be animating the games with arts programming.

In all, since 2013 TAC has supported 52 youth-led projects and 148 first-time grant recipients in the first year alone.

And, it is estimated that these new dollars granted by TAC have leveraged additional revenues totalling $28 million from other sources

For all these reasons, we are delighted that the City is staying the course with recommended arts funding increases and will be adding $2 million to the culture budget this year to be dedicated to increased arts programming during the Pan/ParaPan Am Games.

That’s the good news.  Next you will hear from an artist on our Board.