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El Paso Retains Arts Jobs Through NEA Award

From Press Release

The City of El Paso Museums and Cultural Affairs Department (MCAD) has been awarded $100,000 by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to help retain jobs in the local arts sector. The funding is part of $50 million dollars in stimulus allocated towards non-profit arts organizations through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. MCAD’s proposal was considered in a competitive process—the award represents one of the largest in Texas and the only one made to a municipal arts agency in the state.

MCAD aggressively pursued the funding in response to the community’s need. In March of this year, MCAD conducted a survey to determine how the current economic downturn was impacting local arts organizations. The results showed that as it has nationally, locally the downturn has had a deep effect on the professional arts sector: approximately 50% of organizations indicated they would have to reduce their budgets and 50% indicated they would reduce staffing commitments in the coming fiscal year.

MCAD will redistribute the funding to local arts non-profits in a competitive grant process. Sean McGlynn, MCAD Director, has committed to mirroring the NEA’s process when re-granting funds, “These funds are strictly to help retain professional and contract staff working in non-profit arts organizations. Due to the mandated reporting and oversight requirements, one of the prerequisites will be that an organization has been funded by MCAD in the last two fiscal years.”

MCAD will be contacting organizations who have been determined to be eligible within the next seven days.

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