CAN Thanks Portland City Council

CAN would like to thank the Portland City Council and all of its supporters, members, and volunteers for making March 17th a landmark day in the history of CAN.

Flash ChoirNot only did over 220 supporters heed our call to action to come to Portland City Hall, but after a remarkable report from RACC’s Eloise Damrosch and Carole Morse and testimony from Roger Hinshaw, president of Bank of America Oregon; Holly Wilson, teacher at Rigler Elementary; Kim Stafford, poet; Jack Graves, Chief Cultural Officer for Burgerville; Elane Calder, Executive Director of the Oregon Symphony; Kiera Brinkley, a Benson High junior; and our own Executive Director, Jessica Jarratt, the City Council publicly championed and encouraged CAN’s efforts.

Here’s what they had to say:

City Council President Nick Fish:

“Here’s my commitment as one of the five members of the Council…When Jessica and CAN blow the bugle and rally the community towards the larger goal of dedicated funding for the arts, I will join with her and the mayor and the regional coalition that she put together to fight for that funding.  The case has been made.  It is time we went to the voters and asked for their support.”

Commissioner Dan Saltzman:Portland City Council

“I will do all that I can to help the Creative [Advocacy] Network’s proposed funding strategy.”

Mayor Sam Adams:

“The best days for Portland’s arts and culture communities are ahead of us.  And I said five years ago when I took over the helm of being the arts commissioner for the city of Portland that the arts and culture, heritage, preservation, history community in Portland was the worst organized demographic, social advocacy group in the city of Portland and it is now one of the best and that is a huge, huge change.”

Commissioner Amanda Fritz:

“This is wonderful…Thank you RACC for supporting so many professionals in the community and also so many volunteer projects.  It’s heartwarming to see how this community has pulled together in the worst recession of my lifetime.”

To read more about the event, please visit:

http://racc.org/advocacy/portland-city-council-accepts-racc%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%9Cstate-arts%E2%80%9D-report-0

http://www.portlandonline.com/mayor/index.cfm?c=49278&a=291929

And thank you to the Portland City Council and to all of our supporters!  Together we CAN!

Email the City Council and encourage them to continue to support the arts in Portland:

CAN Enters Fall with a Fury

Dear Friends & Supporters,

CAN is making great strides! 

With your support, we’re pleased to report that CAN gained serious momentum this summer toward the goal of establishing a $15-$20 million annual public fund for the arts and arts education in our region within the next 2-5 years. 

We’re excited to share with you some of the summer’s highlights:

  • Jessica Jarratt was hired to serve as CAN’s first full-time Executive Director on July 1stRead More…
  • Madeline Turnock, APR, was hired as CAN’s communications and outreach director.
  • First Wieden + Kennedy, and now GBD Architects, generously donated office space to launch the movement.
  • More than 55 volunteers were recruited to reach out to tens of thousands of arts supporters at events from TBA to Art in the Pearl and more.
  • More than 75 volunteer hours were logged in August alone.
  • A Membership Campaign was launched raising nearly $20,000 in two weeks from arts organizations across the region.
  • A 50-person Regional Steering Committee was built to finalize the structure of the proposed new fund by this coming winter.
  • The Oregonian shared our story and the results of our recent poll.   Read More…
  • Your investments fueled our efforts and advanced the cause and more of you continue to join us as members every day with a commitment of $10/month at theartscan.org.

And, to think, it was just last spring when the Creative Action Plan (“Act for Art”) for the Portland Metropolitan region – a bold region-wide vision for arts and culture – was formed from the input of 1,500 participants.

What’s up next?  Stay tuned for new additions to CAN’s board of directors and next month’s launch of the Regional Steering Committee.

Poll Results Show Clear Voter Support for the Arts

Voters Understand Arts Funding Challenges and Are Willing To Step Up

PORTLAND, Ore. – Sept. 7, 2009 – Creative Advocacy Network (CAN) released polling results today that show voter resolve to continue attending, supporting and funding the region’s arts and culture in expanded ways.

“The economic crisis helped crystallize public priorities and funding in the minds of voters, and the result is an even stronger commitment to invest in the arts and arts education,” said Jessica Jarratt, CAN executive director. “Meanwhile, we also have a more galvanized arts community.”

Overall, the poll shows a significant jump in positive public opinion and understanding of the important role and need for increased funding of arts and culture in the community

Key findings of the poll include:

 Voters strongly support providing dedicated funding to support the arts in the region and are willing to pay for it. For example, more than two-thirds of voters believe that arts are a necessity, not a luxury, and 74% believe that dedicated arts funding is necessary, up 4% from 2008. And, another 70% of regional voters are willing to pay $1 more per month toward a dedicated public fund for the arts, despite widespread economic concerns.

 Voters continue to attend arts and cultural events and view them as critical to the Portland Metropolitan region’s quality of life and economic well-being. For example, 51% believe that arts and culture helps fuel creativity and innovation crucial to our economy.

 Voters are increasingly concerned that there will be fewer opportunities to enjoy arts and arts education in the region. For example, 71% understand that arts education in schools is being cut.

The latest poll was intended to reveal any shifts in public sentiment that may have taken place since a similar poll conducted in October 2008.

The poll, conducted by Fairbank, Maslin, Maulin & Associates, gauged the opinions of 400 voters within the Portland Metropolitan tri-county area during May 2009, with a margin of error +/- 4.9 percent. Of the 400 voters that surveyed by phone, 150 were in Multnomah County, 125 were in Clackamas County and 125 were in Washington County.

The Portland metro area’s local arts organizations receive less than two percent of their budgets from local government sources, compared to a five percent national average, according to research by the Regional Arts & Culture Council and National Endowment for the Arts.

Read more in today’s Oregonian: http://www.oregonlive.com/art/index.ssf/2009/09/creative_advocacy_network_rele.html.

View or download ‘Polling Summary PDF‘.

Creative Action Plan – it’s here!

In this region, creativity is a part of everything we do, everything we are. Over the past 22 months, more than 1,500 citizens participated in the “Regional Creative Capacity Project,” an assessment of the region’s stengths and weaknesses when it comes to culture, creativity and the arts. This Action Plan is the culmination of the regional research. http://www.creativecapacity.org/media/uploads/RACC_Act.pdf 

It addresses:

  • How can we expand access to the inspiration, education and entertainment that our creative community provides?
  • How can we better support existing institutions, organizations, artists and businesses that contribute to our creative vitality?
  • How can we grow the creative community and its continued advocacy?

With your help, we can continue answering these questions and more.

Contact Portland City Commissioners!

Contact the Portland City Commissioners – send them an email and ask them to support RACC’s full budget request and make Portland a truly sustainable city!

Commissioner Nick Fish, Nick@ci.portland.or.us

Commissioner Amanda Fritz, Amanda@ci.portland.or.us

Commissioner Randy Leonard, RLeonard@ci.portland.or.us

Commissioner Dan Saltzman, Dan@ci.portland.or.us

April 13th 2009 Town Hall

On Monday April 13th Portland Mayor Sam Adams, Washington County Commissioner Dick Schouten, and Metro Councilor Carlotta Collette will be holding a regional Town Hall on transforming how we fund the arts and arts education.

You are encouraged to attend and bring others who are interested in the arts.

The program will cover the release of the Regional Creative Action Plan, tips for arts organizations in this economic crisis, and the official launch of the Creative Advocacy Network on what you can do to help establish a $15-$20 million dedicated regional fund for the arts.

Please RSVP to info@TheArtsCAN.org if you can attend the Town Hall.

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March 12 Portland City Council Hearing – what a turn out!

Supporters of the arts in the Portland region turned out in full force at the March 12 City Council hearing where the Regional Arts and Culture Council presented their State of the Arts address. Council chambers were packed – 200 seats filled plus standing room only in the balcony!

Powerful testimony was presented by a variety of supporters, including CAN’s Board Chair Chris Coleman (Artistic Director of Portland Center Stage). See Chris’ reading of the CANifesto – developed by Portland’s own North.com.

March 12th 2009 Arts Action Alert

The Creative Advocacy Network, a new non-profit working towards a regional dedicated funding solution for the arts, is working hard to make sure that the Regional Arts and Culture Budget is preserved by Portland City Council.  On March 12th at 2:00 RACC will be giving their “State of the Arts” presentation to Portland City Council and describing how last year’s investments in the arts benefitted the City. It is important that City Council see strong support and solidarity from the arts community.

The Arts CAN, and must live here.  Please RSVP to info@theartscan.org if you think you can make it on March 12th.

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There will be time after RACC’s presentation for a few enthusiastic art supporters to testify.  If you have interest in testifying about how RACC has helped you or your organization over the last year please send me an email at kathleen@TheArtsCAN.org.

Keep checking back to this site for direction and messaging about contacting the Portland City Commissioners later this month about supporting RACC’s FY09-10 budget and add packages.