NCFA Welcomes JOC Recommendations in ’The Arts Matter’
The NCFA welcomes the recommendations of the Joint Committee on Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht report, ’The Arts Matter’, published this week. In particular, the NCFA notes the Committee’s call for Government to return funding to the Arts Council to its pre-2008 figure, a recommendation which the NCFA has put forward to the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in successive pre-budget submissions.
Furthermore, the Committee’s request for clarification of the timeline and apportionment of the regularly-cited doubling of arts funding, is now critical. This budgetary promise made by the Taoiseach in 2017 has yet to be clearly set out, and while overall increases are a positive step forward, there has been no sign to date of a funding roadmap to achieve this target. The Committee’s report also highlights the problematic nature of recent increases allocated to capital rather than current spending, which greatly limits the funding making its way to artists.
Speaking about ‘The Arts Matter’, NCFA Chair, Angela Dorgan said that ‘The Joint Committee’s report provides welcome recommendations which the NCFA has long called for — in particular a clear roadmap to achieving the doubling of arts funding, and mainstreaming of the arts across Government departments. We also appreciate their comments regarding the need for more cohesive engagement in the arts across the education cycle, particularly at Leaving Certificate. ‘
‘It will be crucial now for the Government to show that they have heard these recommendations and in so doing, prioritise progress towards their achievement in the upcoming budget’