NiTRO Creative Matters

Perspectives on creative arts in higher education

Arts in the Federal Budget: entertainment and heritage rather than art making

The recent federal budget was perhaps notable for its absence of announcements on how it will support the arts. According to ABC’s Triple J Hack the ‘winners’ in arts and music of this year’s budget include: SBS which gets $6 million to support Australian film and television content (while at the same time receiving $30 million to broadcast ‘unrepresented’ sport); Community radio which receives $6 million over 2 years; The Australia Council which has seen a significant percentage of the former ‘Catalyst’ funding returned; and small business owner musicians and artists who will benefit from the tax offsets for small businesses. However, it notes that the ‘Losers’ include music and arts students who face a ‘fee increase of 1.8 per cent next year, and 7.5 per cent by 2022’ adding to the increased difficulties placed upon those who want to study creative arts in the VET sector which was hit by the removal of student loans for over 60 arts diplomas announced last year.

Although the (predominantly Canberra based) national collection agencies  will have access to $48.5 million over three years for capital works, and the development of delivery and services, via the Public Service Modernisation Fund, as Jo Caust noted in her article in The Conversation, this is more of a budget for cultural heritage (and entertainment)  rather than art-making.

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