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Arts Funding Cut $50,000 in Mayor's Budget

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer’s proposed budget includes a reduction in overall funding for arts and cultural organizations. The city budget allocates half a million dollars to 32 arts, cultural assets and parks agencies, down more than $50,000 from the last fiscal year. The Louisville Ballet took an 80 percent cut in funding from the city. Last year, the organization received $29,000. The organization asked for the same amount this year. Fischer recommended the Ballet receive $5,800.“It is a significant blow,” says Ballet spokeswoman Cara Hicks. “It will be difficult for us to make up that shortfall.”Hicks says the Ballet has seen significant decreases in city funding over the last three years. “We knew there was going to be another decrease this year. We just didn’t know to what degree,” says Hicks.The Ballet’s 2012-13 season is set, and Hicks says artistic programming will not be affected. Last year, the ballet operated on a $3 million budget, and the organization is in the process of finalizing the budget for the next fiscal year. “Organizations across the board are getting cuts. I’m sure we’re not the only ones who saw a drastic reduction in our funding from the city. We’ll be more proactive and find ways to bridge that gap through corporations and individual donors,” she says. The Metro Council will review the spending plan over the next month, and lawmakers have been known to reinstate some trimmed arts funding. The Ballet plans on asking Metro Council to reconsider the allocation before approving the budget.