Walter Pierce

Arts community mobilizing against Jindal

by Walter Pierce

Word has been spreading rapidly through the state arts community: Gov. Bobby Jindal plans to veto the financial sources for Decentralized Arts Funding, tourism promotion and other cultural endeavors. That's according to a dire letter mailed this week to arts councils, arts presenters and others by the office of Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu. If Jindal does veto the funding sources, it would amount to an 85 percent cut to DAF, which brings it in line with the executive budget he submitted at the start of the session.

But the arts community statewide isn’t taking the veto threat lying down. Within hours of the letter from the lieutenant governor’s office, two Facebook pagesLouisiana for Arts Funding and Save Louisiana Arts — were set up to encourage residents who support the arts to make their voices heard. The former site also links to a download for a Louisiana Partnership for the Arts brochure detailing the contribution — $10 billion and 144,000 jobs — Louisiana’s cultural economy contributes to the state annually.