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Uncertainty and Opportunity – Oregon Cultural Advocacy Coalition

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Friends, Oregon’s legislative session is officially underway.

Budget-writers estimate that the state is $1.8 billion short of the money it needs to fund everything that state government currently pays for.

The governor’s budget has already proposed reducing funding for the Oregon Arts Commission, and while that is a tough place to start budget negotiations from, we are working with legislators to protect full funding for our arts and culture agencies, in this daunting budget environment.

But, it won’t be easy. A budget gap of $1.8 billion will put pressure on interests across the political spectrum. Arts and culture budgets may be at risk, not because legislators are against us–but because the budget must balance. Without bi-partisan support for new revenues, it could be a tough session for existing programs and a tougher session for new spending.

Some of the threats on the horizon are visible from here, but some

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