FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, February 17 2010
Senators get smart on art
Senate Committee Unanimously Approves Bills to Stimulate Creative Sector
DENVER— The Senate Business Labor and Technology Committee unanimously passed two bills which will improve economic development in Colorado’s creative industries, such as photography, film, fashion, commercial design, advertising and visual and performing arts.
Senate Bill 158, sponsored by Senator Linda Newell (D-Littleton), will consolidate the Offices of Colorado Council for the Arts, Arts in Public Places and Film and Media Production into a Creative Industries Division within the Office of Economic Development & International Trade. This division will support Colorado’s numerous artistic industries so that they become more competitive and stronger nationwide.
“We are already highly-ranked nationally in architecture and publishing,” said Sen. Newell. “We need to continue to foster a business environment in which these fields can thrive and create jobs in Colorado. This will show that in Colorado, the arts mean business, revenue, tourism, and jobs.”
Senate Bill 94, “Art in Public Places”, is sponsored by Senator Pat Steadman (D-Denver) and will close a legal loophole in the existing law that dedicates one percent of state capital construction spending towards funding public art for the building project.
“The one percent for art law has created substantial benefits for our state, not only in improving our quality of life but also in terms of economic development within the creative industries,” said Sen. Steadman. “Art in public places attracts business and prosperity to Colorado.”
Both bills will work toward stimulating Colorado’s creative industries without any fiscal impact. These industries comprise over 186,000 jobs in almost 8,000 enterprises in Colorado making it the 5th largest employment sector in Colorado and one of the fastest-growing in the state. Additionally, these bills have a positive effect on all of Colorado’s many different regions, helping artists in large cities as well as rural communities.
These bills will next be heard on the Senate floor for second reading. Both bills are sponsored by Representative Joe Rice (D-Littleton) in the House.
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