On February 27, the Alberta government announced details of its 2020-21 budget. The government has continued to invest in the Alberta Foundation for the Arts (AFA), in spite of a difficult fiscal situation. The 2020-21 budget allocation is $26.9 million.
While the AFA allocation for this year has been announced, it is important to note that no decisions about AFA programs have been made at this time. The AFA Board of Directors will meet to approve its 2020-21 spending plan later this spring. Once the plan is approved, we will communicate our funding approach to the community.
The AFA Board of Directors is committed to fulfilling its legislative mandate to encourage the growth and development of the arts in Alberta by using existing resources. While the AFA allocation represents a reduction of five per cent from the 2019-20 budget, we acknowledge the challenging fiscal environment under which the government is currently operating, and we are committed to doing our part to support government’s mandate. We recognize that any reduction in funding has an impact on AFA support to the sector. Our board will focus on making decisions in line with our mandate and do our best to minimize the negative impact to the arts community.
Continued support for the AFA signals the government’s understanding of the important contributions made by our arts community to Alberta’s culture sector and Albertans’ quality of life. While the AFA continues to be the government’s primary means to provide support to the arts sector, we recognize other arts initiatives that government is pursuing outside the scope of the AFA. These include a commitment to develop an Arts Professions Act for Alberta, supporting the Month of the Artist in September, and supporting a provincial Artist in Residence program. The AFA is supportive of these initiatives as ways to increase awareness of the value of the arts and artists in Alberta, as well as increase engagement between government and the arts community.
The AFA will continue to work towards an Alberta where a vibrant arts community, embraced by all Albertans, inspires inclusion, innovation, and creativity.
Government of Alberta 2020-21 Entity Financial Information (PDF) - AFA Statement of Operations on page 63