Musicians perform during a Surrey City Orchestra “mixer” at board member Erin Anne Beirne’s home in South Surrey in 2017. (File photo: Tom Zillich)

Province announces $3M in funding for arts groups hit by COVID-19 crisis

BC Arts Council to administer support for both organizations and individual artists

The provincial government has announced a new $3-million fund for artists and arts and cultural organizations impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

The bail-out, the Arts and Culture Resilience Supplement, was announced Friday by tourism arts and culture minister Lisa Beare.

Beare said the supplement, to be administered by the BC Arts Council, will provide “operating and eligible project clients” up to $15,000 in early April “to help them pay their bills.”

“Starting in April 2020, the BC Arts Council will provide operating clients a 50% advance on 2020-21 funding to help with their cash flow,” Beare said.

READ ALSO: Juno Awards cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns

READ ALSO: Hopeful’ theatre company auditions actors by video for summer shows in Surrey

“We are also extending application deadlines, relaxing reporting requirements and allowing organizations to use funding to cover immediate needs like rent and utilities.”

Beare added that the new BC Emergency Benefit for Workers will allow individuals in the arts sector who have had their income affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, to apply for a one-time payment of $1,000.

“Our government’s financial support plan includes several actions that arts organizations are eligible for, such as delaying tax filing and payment deadlines,” she noted.

Describing the move as a “first and necessary step,” Beare said the measures represent what can be done immediately within the existing BC Arts Council budget to help organizations during the pandemic, and promised that more regarding additional supports for the arts sector will be announced in the weeks ahead.

“COVID-19 and the need for physical distancing has had a significant impact on everyone, including those in the arts sector,” Beare noted.

“Arts organizations right away responded to the orders, direction and recommendations from the provincial health officer, showing great leadership by cancelling events, performances and festivals to protect people’s health,” she said.

“We understand this has had a significant impact on artists, their families and arts organizations.”



alex.browne@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Arts and EntertainmentCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Poll: Should Penticton allow drinks on the beach?

Legally drinking in some Penticton parks and beaches could become a reality as early as June 5

Summerland amends procedure for virtual council meetings, adding transparency

During COVID-19 pandemic, meetings have been held using online technology

Summerland to reopen playgrounds and recreational facilities

Some outdoor spaces will reopen on June 1, but arena and aquatic centre remain closed

Playgrounds to reopen across the Okanagan on June 1

After nearly two months closure, playgrounds are set to reopen

LETTER: Summerland solar project should be reviewed

Questions raised about feasibility of proposed power project

Feds looking at ways to reunite families amid COVID-19 border restrictions with U.S.

Some families with members of dual-citizenship have become separated due to the pandemic

VIDEO: Humpback whales put on quite a show

The ‘playful’ pod lingered by a Campbell River tour operator’s boat for quite some time

Strong thunderstorms expected for Shuswap, Okanagan this weekend

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement with storms expected late Saturday

B.C. woman launches First Nations search, rescue and patrol program

Linda Peters envisions trained searchers ready to go at moment’s notice in each B.C. First Nation

Large cruise ships barred from Canadian waters until end of October: Garneau

Last year 140 cruise ships brought more than two million visitors to Canadian ports

Flood watch for Salmon River upgraded as high temperatures, rain forecast

Shuswap Emergency Program warns residents to prepare now for possible extreme flooding

Man who bound, murdered Vancouver Island teen still a risk to public: parole board

Kimberly Proctor’s killer is still ‘mismanaging emotions,’ has had ‘temper tantrums’

RCMP request public’s help in locating missing Salmon Arm man

Ken Derkach is a familiar face to many, one of the city’s residents who is without a home

Booze on Kelowna beaches? Mayor says ‘not at the moment’

Mayor Colin Basran says alcohol in public spaces is not on council’s radar right now — but that could change

Most Read