Sidney councillor pushes for more regional arts funding

After convincing her council that there’s added value in contributing to regional arts, Marilyn Loveless is hoping others will too

After success in convincing her municipal council that there’s added value in contributing to a regional arts council, Marilyn Loveless is hoping her neighbours will see the light.

Loveless, a councillor in the Town of Sidney, recently convinced her fellow councillors to significantly increase their contribution to the Capital Regional District’s arts council. At budget meetings last month, Sidney agreed to roll cash left in a fund to help the region try to lure the Juno awards to the south Island. That effort didn’t pan out, so Sidney added $5,000 to its 2013 contribution, bringing it to $15,000.

The CRD, said Loveless who is Sidney’s liaison on the regional arts council, supports regional programs and services in the arts community and can provide support to local programs as well.

“Local citizens take advantage of those services,” Loveless noted at art month’s tri-municipal council meeting held in North Saanich. “They often assume their tax dollars help those events but for the most part, it does not.”

Sidney’s contribution, said Loveless, helps local arts groups take advantage of regional grants or programs.

North Saanich councillor Dunstan Browne noted that his community has $5,000 set aside to support the CRD arts council, as per past practise.

The District of Central Saanich has taken steps in its budget process to possibly find more money.