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           14 May, 2021

Category:  Press » Arts


San Francisco Property Tax Payers Provide Direct Support to Community Arts Groups Through the Voluntary Arts Contribution Fund

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2006-05-31 01:35:10     

It's no secret that with the current U.S. and local economy struggling to meet basic needs of citizens, arts and cultural organizations continue to suffer difficult economic times. Yet in times of social and economic stress, people continue to turn to the arts and culture for affirmation, vision, protest, hope, and a sense of community and connectedness. San Francisco taxpayers make a direct difference for local arts groups and audiences through their participation in the Voluntary Arts Contribution Fund, administered through San Francisco’s Grants for the Arts, a program long imitated by other U.S. cities. The Voluntary Arts Contribution Fund (VACF), supported solely through contributions from San Francisco property taxpayers, offers local arts presenters funds for capital improvements, such as the purchase of equipment or facilities upgrades, that result in a safer, more secure, and more satisfying environment for the creation and enjoyment of their arts programs.

“The survival of San Francisco's unique cultural and artistic organizations is the responsibility of all of us”, said Mayor Gavin Newsom. “It has always been the case that the arts in our vibrant, world renowned culture capital have been supported by individual citizens. These are the true heroes and patrons of San Francisco's arts — not just the big, visible donors — and the VACF is a terrific way for them to come forward at this crucial time. They should know that every little helps, even a small contribution will make a big difference, and that 100% of all contributions go to the smallest organizations that need it most,” the Mayor added.

“It is rewarding to see how creatively these small arts groups use VACF funding to improve their work,” said Kary Schulman, Director of Grants for the Arts, which oversees the VACF program. “The VACF helps the San Francisco arts community both artistically and administratively.”

This year, over $100,00 will be distributed by the VACF to forty arts groups, which have been notified of grants for their requested capital improvements. Award amounts this year range from $1,100 to $4,000, for improvements that include lighting, sound, and recording equipment; software, security and telephone systems; repair of leaky windows, fire resistant curtains for theater spaces, dance studio mirrors, and other technical and safety needs. Known in the arts community as “little grants that make a big difference,” VACF funds come to the rescue when groups urgently need equipment or find themselves with emergency expenditures such as mandated safety hardware, new exit signs, wheelchair ramps, special security lighting, or other required or desired improvements.

VACF awards are recommended by a Citizens Advisory Committee, guided primarily by the Fund’s priorities: the need for safety-code related work and the impact these funds will have on the ability of a group to present its work, as well as enhance audience comfort and accessibility to arts facilities. Funding is done on a reimbursement basis, but when an organization does not have funds available to purchase equipment or make improvements, Grants for the Arts can facilitate Quick Qualifying Low Interest Loans from the Arts Loan Fund (ALF), which allows groups to take out a short-term loan for the full amount of the grant.

Specialized in: Voluntary Arts Contribution Fund - Property Tax Payers
URL: http://sfgfta.org/
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