Arts in California Could See a Renaissance Thanks to Huge Influx of State Funding

The devastation wrought by the pandemic has paved the way for a once-in-a-lifetime windfall for the arts in Orange County and throughout California, thanks to a fiscal year state budget for 2021-22 which allocates some $615 million in funds, including more than $120 million in funding for the state’s designated arts agency, the California Arts Council (CAC).

Bipartisan support within the state legislature led directly to increases that took effect on July 1, 2021, the start of the new fiscal year. A surplus of $76 billion and another $27 billion in federal aid paved the way for an operating budget of $262.6 billion and kicked open a door for legislators to address urgent needs throughout the state in the areas of culture and the arts.

The consensus is that the increased funding of the arts is an investment not only in the CAC’s mission to strengthen the arts, culture and creative expression – all of which are vital tools in cultivating a California in which everyone sees and realizes benefits on multiple levels – but also by giving a leg up in areas like staffing and for pilot and development programs.