FY2022 Advocacy Platform and Details

Fiscal Year 2022 holds the promise of reopening for the arts and humanities sector, the beginning of an industry-wide recovery, and a return to a more normal lifestyle for our art, cultural practices and lives. These possibilities only increase the importance of consistent and clear advocacy efforts that focus on our collective impact, recovery needs, and community value.

Where the Arts and Humanities Stand Currently

County Executive Marc Elirch proposed a 1.5% increase of $84,347 to the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County’s FY 2022 budget allocation for regranting and operation. The proposed increase would take AHCMC from $5,623,159 in FY 2021 to $5,707,506 in FY 2022; definitely good news; we thank the County Executive for his stalwart support!

FY 2022 Arts and Humanities Sector Response + Platform

AHCMC thanks County Executive Elrich for his increased and continuing support for the arts and humanities in Montgomery County, but must request additional funding based on rising demand from the field and the continuing devastation to Montgomery County’s cultural sector caused by Covid-19 related business and event restrictions.

The Advocacy Platform:

The County Executive noted an understanding that recovery for the hospitality, restaurant and hotel sector will be slower.  The arts and humanities must be included in that mindset.  Our request for increased support is based on data that can inform a dynamic and impactful recovery strategy for Montgomery County’s arts and humanities sector.

  • In line with the County Executive’s proposed Recovery Budget, and the demand AHCMC notes, we ask for:
    • $1.25 million for our FY22 budget to include:
      • $1.8 million to meet re-granting demand
      • $70,000 for administrative oversight
  • $3.33 million per year for three years – FY 21-23 from the Relief Fund allocations from the Federal Government. 

The Need for Increased Support

Data from recent surveys to the field show a 12% increase in demand for FY 2022 over FY 2021 in our sector. Additional funding to meet demand and support for a cultural sector devastated by Covid-19 related business and event restrictions is needed. That increase totals $1.25 million. This increase encompasses FY19 grant applicants and expanded FY20 and FY21 grant pool resulting from COVID emergency relief and outreach initiatives.

Additional Relief Funding is Critical:

Montgomery County received $203,774,467 in relief funds from the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan that includes $82 million in currently unallocated funds according to County Executive Elrich. The Arts and Humanities sector of Montgomery County requests $10 million of that funding be used to provide $3.33 million in relief annually over three years: FY 2021, FY 2022, and FY 2023.