TRENTON, NJ – Demonstrating the Christie Administration’s commitment to furthering arts in New Jersey, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts today awarded more than $15.7 million in grant funding to nearly 800 arts organizations, projects and artists throughout the state. The awards were announced at the Arts Council’s 46th Annual Meeting held at the War Memorial in Trenton.
“Investing in the arts is critical to New Jersey’s future. Today’s grants will serve as a catalyst of economic growth and jobs, not to mention a key contributor to improving our overall quality of life,” said Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno, who also serves as Secretary of State. “Governor Christie and I remain committed to maintaining New Jersey’s place as a national leader in support for the arts.”
In commenting on the results of the meeting, Arts Council outgoing chair Ofelia Garcia stated, “The Council is confident that we have made the most responsible investment of valuable resources, recognizing the highest standards of excellence among the diverse arts communities in the state, that they may provide their critical and irreplaceable services to our citizens".
The Council receives funding in direct appropriations from the State of New Jersey through a dedicated hotel and motel occupancy fee and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. Funding decisions are made through a merit-based and rigorous grants process that assures access and equity. Independent peer panels evaluate grant applications to eliminate the possibility for conflict of interest.
According to a recent study by Dun & Bradstreet on the arts and economic prosperity, New Jersey is home to more than 25,000 arts-related businesses employing more than 87,000 people.
“This study supports what New Jersey already knows; that a vibrant arts and cultural sector are crucial in developing a prepared workforce, attracting and retaining businesses, and fostering the creative thinking and innovation that will keep us competitive for years to come,” continued Guadagno.
The New Jersey State Council on the Arts is a division of the NJ Department of State. It receives funding in direct appropriations from the State of New Jersey through a dedicated Hotel/Motel Occupancy fee and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. Since 1966, its volunteer members and professional staff have worked to improve the quality of life in New Jersey by helping the arts to flourish. To learn more about the Council please visit www.artscouncil.nj.gov. For more information about what's happening in the arts statewide, visit, www.jerseyarts.com, or call 1-800-THE ARTS.