Dear colleagues in the arts sector:

We hope this message finds you healthy and safe, as so many in our sector wrestle with persistent pandemic-era challenges.

We’d like to provide an update regarding the state arts budget and organization grants for next fiscal year (FY2022).

Funding for the Arts

First, you may be aware that the Governor’s Office included arts funding in their FY2022 executive budget proposal. We appreciate the support and acknowledgement of the arts sector as a driver of community and economic wellbeing.

The Governor’s budget proposal is one of the first steps in the budget process, which largely takes place in the State Legislature. In both the State House and Senate, legislators are considering bills that would allocate $5 million for next year’s arts budget. Though the eventual outcome is not yet clear, those bills are active and in process.

We also remain in discussion with Governor’s Office representatives about the potential for additional arts sector relief via federal resources.

Grants for Organizations

For those who have received organizational grants from the Arts Commission, namely Community Investment Grants or Festival Grants, this is typically the time of year when you would be submitting applications for a mid-spring deadline.

However, the overall funding picture is less clear than in a typical year. And at a time when you, our colleagues and partners in the arts, are already experiencing unparalleled uncertainty, we do not want you spending your labor on applications until we have a bit more certainty that funding will be available.

Therefore the Arts Commission has decided not to open organizational applications until we have more visibility into the amount and type of funding that will be available for grantmaking.

To be very clear: the fact that grant guidelines have not yet been issued does not mean there will not be organizational grants in FY2022. The Arts Commission will administer organizational grants. This pause simply means that we need more information about the type of funds available (relief or standard state funding allocation) to structure guidelines in ways that are accessible and responsive.

In any case, our goal will be to make the next organizational grant cycle as simple and streamlined as possible, and available as soon as more information is known.

Please Stay Tuned

Updates and developments will be shared through our regular channels, and as always, please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions.

Thank you for your ongoing service in the arts and to Arizona communities.

Jaime Dempsey, Executive Director