LAFAYETTE, La (KLFY) — Funding for the Acadiana Center for the Arts (AcA) was restored in a unanimous vote after a council member brought a proposal to restore funding cuts that were implemented last year due to COVID-19, according to a press release from the AcA.
The City of Lafayette reduced funding to arts and culture last July in anticipation of revenue shortfalls from the pandemic, but the AcA says that the shortfalls never materialized.
The AcA, along with many other arts and music organizations, experienced revenue shortfalls due to government-imposed limitations on events during the Coronavirus pandemic. The proposal restored funding to the previous level of funding for the AcA.
Councilwoman Nanette Cook brought the proposal to restore last year’s funding cuts to the Acadiana Center for the Arts during the July 6 City Council meeting. The City Council passed the restoration of funding with a unanimous vote. Councilman Glenn Lazard brought a similar proposal to increase city support for Festival International de Louisiane, which also passed.
AcA Executive Director Samuel Oliver said, “We are grateful for the City Council’s decision to restore the cuts made last year now that we are reopening to a regular schedule of performances, exhibitions, and other community events. The support of the Council and the Guillory Administration are crucial at this time when the arts are coming back after a dark and difficult 18 months.”
The AcA raises $8.50 from the private sector for every $1 of city investment. Oliver says that is the definition of a successful public-private partnership.
City Council members voting in support of the ordinance included Pat Lewis (District 1), Andy Naquin
(District 2), Liz Webb Hebert (District 3), Nanette Cook (District 4), and Glenn Lazard (District 5).
Mayor-President Guillory spoke in support of the ordinance at the meeting.