L.A. County Arts Commission Awards $4M in Grants

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The Los Angeles County Arts Commission on July 7 announced $4,118,000 in two-year grants to 184 nonprofit arts organizations through its Organizational Grant Program (OGP).

These grants are the first under more flexible guidelines that permitted organizations in the small and mid-sized budget categories to request support for current organizational needs rather than projects relating to specific areas of organizational growth. Notably, 106 (58 percent) of the 184 grantees are receiving funding to help support salaries or job creation, impacting county residents through increased job opportunities as well as through services.

“These grants benefit residents of all ages in all parts of our county,” said Arts Commission President Ollie Blanning. “By supporting projects such as free events that whole families can attend — 57 percent of all admissions to grantee events are free — these grants make the arts accessible to everyone.”

Arts Commission Executive Director Laura Zucker noted, “Arts organizations continue to play an important role in Los Angeles County’s economic recovery, not only through job creation and retention, but by driving visitors to our region.”

Lists of current grantees are at www.lacountyarts.org. Click on “Grants,” then “List of Current Grantees.” The total funds awarded were the same as for the 2010-12 grants announced last year at this time. Grants to organizations range from $3,500 (Trade & Row, Redbird, La Danserie) to $208,600 (L.A. Opera).

To see examples of how OGP grants are working in communities across the county, visit the OGP grantee photo album on the Arts Commission’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/lacountyarts.

The 2011-13 grantees are broken down by size of organization:

• Small Budget (under $100,000) – 71 grantees totaling $748,360, including Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment Foundation Inc., which received $19,500 to support an operations coordinator; and Kodo Arts Sphere America (taiko), which received $9,300 to support a program director.

• Mid-size Budget 1 ($100,000-$500,000) – 70 grants totaling $1,121,550.

• Mid-size Budget 2 ($500,000-$1,500,000) – 28 grants totaling $1,042,650, including Southern California Asian American Studies Central (Visual Communications), which received $28,800 to support its Armed with a Camera fellowship program.

• Large Budget (more than $1,500,000) – 15 grantees totaling $1,205,440, including the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center, which received $50,800 to support audience accessibility programs.

Among the latest grantees, 35 (19 percent) are receiving county arts grants for the first time. Of these, 21 are in the Small Budget category, 11 are in the Mid-Size Budget 1 category, two are in the Mid-Size Budget 2 category, and one is in the Large Budget category.

In addition to the 184 arts organizations whose grants were approved by the Board of Supervisors, 166 organizations are receiving the second installment of two-year grants awarded last year. These grantees bring the total number of arts organizations receiving county funds during the current fiscal year to 350.

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