Holt urges Budget certainty for regional arts

Tom ZaunmayrAugusta Margaret River Times
South West MLC Colin Holt at the Nationals State Conference in Manjimup.
Camera IconSouth West MLC Colin Holt at the Nationals State Conference in Manjimup. Credit: Picture: Tom Zaunmayr, Tom Zaunmayr.

The State Government is being urged to ensure it continues to fund programs in full for regional arts and culture ahead of May’s budget.

Nationals WA culture and the arts spokesman Colin Holt said Labor had gone quiet on regional arts funding, including the future of the Creative Regions program.

“Sadly, this program, along with others including the WA Regional Film Fund and the Performing Arts Regional Tour Boost, have had no money allocated beyond 30 June this year,” he said.

“The regional arts sector is effectively in limbo, awaiting its fate on Budget day.

“It is a sad state of affairs because we know the positive, community-building impact a healthy arts sector has on regional towns.”

Mr Holt said WA-based films such as Breath, Red Dog and Jasper Jones were proof of the positive impact of Royalties for Regions investment in the arts.

Acting Arts Minister Mick Murray said regional arts had the State Government’s support.

“The McGowan Government has delivered election co-mmitments of $8 million for a regional exhibitions touring boost and $750,000 to support the attraction of visitors to region-al museums and collections,” he said.

“The West Australian Region-al Film Fund has another year to run and will undergo an evaluation of its effective-ness prior to the next budget process.”

Mr Murray said the WA regional film fund would run for another year and undergo an evaluation prior to the next budget.

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