Add your voice to help change to the way Jersey City supports the arts.
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The following was published in the Jersey Journal/NJ.com and signed by 30 members of the Jersey City artistic community. Please add your name to this growing list of people concerned for the future of the arts in JC.
The Fulop administration has identified the arts as playing an important role in the economic and cultural development of Jersey City. However, artists and arts groups have been underfunded, excluded from city planning decisions, and marginalized as real estate and the cost of living in Jersey City have skyrocketed. Consequently, Jersey City arts groups have closed or become dormant, arts leaders have resigned or moved away, and ordinances/legislation designed to support the arts have been ignored or not enforced. After years of dialogue with the city about the arts sector’s critical need for support, and without substantive policy from the city, artists and arts groups hereby set out below the requisite policy items necessary for arts in Jersey City to become sustainable and adequately supported.
We, the undersigned, ask the following of the administration:
1. The City of Jersey City dedicates the entire 3% Hotel/Motel Occupancy Tax to Arts/Culture local non-profit organizations, to be distributed by a neutral, professionally-qualified arts entity, acceptable to the arts community.
2. That all decisions involving future rezoning for “arts districts”, major capital projects such as renovating the Loew's Theater, re-opening of the Jersey City Museum, or the like, be made with a neutral, professionally-qualified arts entity at the table representing the arts community as a full negotiating partner. It is imperative that the voices of seasoned artists, dancers, performers, and professionals from the arts field have a say in policy that will affect them, and the public, for years to come.
3. That all programs currently underway that involve the arts – including the JC Mural Arts program – be immediately halted, until a system of transparency is put into place and input from the art community is heard and incorporated. We want there to be murals and we want there to be art in JC, but we want to ensure that this is done in a productive and responsible way that reflects the very best of our city.
4. The Department of City Planning assigns a staff person charged with the responsibility and accountability for upholding all arts provisions written into city ordinances, zoning, land use plans, and building plans. This staff person will also be responsible for advocating for arts space, artist housing, and other opportunities to provide funding and resources to arts groups as building projects are presented in Jersey City.
Catalina Aranguren, artist/ board member, JC Children's Theater
Mira Prinz Arey, co-organizer, West Side Arts & Music
Christine Barney, Board Secretary, ProArts
Meredith Burns, Executive Director, Art House Productions
Madeleine Cag, Board Member, Nimbus Dance Works
Jerome China, artist
Clay Cockrell, Executive Producer, JCity Theater
Sandy Cockrell, Artistic Director, JCity Theater
Gaye Dunstan, co-organizer, West Side Arts & Music
Brigid D’Souza, board member, JC Children's Theater
Jeff Edwards, writer/art critic
Henry Faulkner, Board Member, Nimbus Dance Works
David Gibson, Board Chair, Art House Productions
Christine Goodman, Founder, Arthouse Productions
Brittany Graziosi, artist, organizer Pacific Flea and JC Oddities Market
Nanette Hernandez, Director of Development and Education Initiatives, Segunda Quimbamba
Kay Kenny, President Emeritus, ProArts Jersey City
Annie Kessler, singer
Charles Kessler, artist
Hannah Kwon, Board Member, Nimbus Dance Works
Brian Lawlor, musician
Olga Levina, Artistic Director, Jersey City Theater Center
Michael Lindgren, writer
Sarah Ordway, artist/writer
Judith Pott, Board Member, Nimbus Dance Works
Samuel Pott, Founding Artistic Director, Nimbus Dance Works
Jon Rappleye, artist
Laurie Riccadonna, artist, Professor HCCC
Jeremy Smith, artist
Amy Wilson, artist
Larry B. Wright, printer/publisher
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