The California Arts, Culture and Entertainment Industry suffers from one of the highest unemployment rates with one- third of our sector out of work. That is more than 450,000 jobs and an estimated $45B in accumulative economic loss. That’s 30.4% of California’s creative jobs lost due to COVID.(April - July, Brooking’s Institution). Art venues including museums and theaters across California were the first to close and may be the last to re-open with billions of jobs and revenue losses. Locally The Yuba Theatre has been closed all of 2020 and Sierra County Arts Council(SCAC) has lost all event income. The Kentucky Mine museum and amphitheater have been closed. Public art and music events that support local community and business groups across our county have been cancelled. Local artists and musicians have been unable to practice their art in public and have lost performance income and sales revenue.
The Sierra County Arts Council has been grateful to the California Arts Council and to various Federal Relief programs for support and relief during the COVID crisis. SCAC has made every effort connect our artists with relief funding sources. We are pleased to announce that we have awarded grants to arts organizations that serve Sierra County through the Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The CARES Act recognizes that the nonprofit arts industry is an important sector of America’s economy. In response to the rapidly evolving situation around the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the National Endowment for the Arts awarded 40 percent of its CARES appropriation directly to state and regional arts agencies. The National Endowment for the Arts is directing these funds to support arts organizations and their employees to endure the economic hardships caused by the forced closure of their operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This funding was received and administrated by the California Arts Council(CAC).
As a state agency, the CAC, voted in a public meeting to direct this funding to the State Local-Partners (SLPs) for regranting on the county level. In alignment with the CAC’s public mission and commitment to racial equity, and in response to public health data and state leadership practices, funds were designated to support local arts and cultural organizations serving communities of color disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.
As State-Local Partner(SLP) with the CAC, Sierra County Arts Council in partnership with Nevada County Arts Council is pleased to announce that we have awarded CARES Relief grants to the following organizations.
- Musica Sierra will receive $4,200 to fund eight BIPOC musicians as part of its existing Digital Stage Series. These artists will work with Musica Sierra to develop videos that highlight BIPOC artists in a month-long event in the first half of 2021. These BIPOC(black, indigenous, people of color) artists will be brought together to help create a series of performances and presentations that will explore the unique perspective of artists of color.
- Sierra Native American Culture Group will receive $4,200 to support indigenous artists, events, workshops, and programs in Sierra County, as an essential resource and meeting space for Sierra County’s Tribal peoples so that they may continue their important culture work and bring programming and events to citizens and visitors to Sierra County.
- California Heritage Indigenous Research Project will receive $4,200 in a combination of general operating support and continued function of its "Nisenan Visibility Project". This would include three educational events sharing Nisenan history in collaboration with the Sierra County Historical Society.
We would like to give a big thank you to our partner, Eliza Tudor of Nevada County Arts Council. Her assistance was invaluable in helping Sierra County arts organizations to receive this vital funding.
In breaking news, Governor Newsom is proposing $4.5 Billion for Equitable Recovery for California’s Businesses and Jobs in the 2021 Budget. The budget dedicates $25 million for a small cultural institution grant program for museums and theaters, and a $15 million to the California Arts Council (CAC), for a statewide pilot program - California Creative Corps - which will fuel positivity, regain public trust, and inspire safe and healthy behavior across California’s diverse populations through media, outreach, and an engagement campaign.
The SCAC will continue in its efforts to support arts organizations and artists across Sierra County during these unprecedented times of hardship. Please check out the Artists Relief page on our website: www.sierracountyartscouncil.org or email Executive Director, B.J. Jordan at firstname.lastname@example.org for questions and assistance. Stay well and we look forward to dancing in the streets again someday.