Sunday, August 16, 2009

NYS Arts Action Update

NYS Arts related that Rocco Landesman was confirmed by the Senate as the new Chairman of the NEA. In an article in the NY Time on August 8, Mr. Landesman said that as chairman he will focus on the potential of the arts to help in the country's economic recovery. "'I wouldn't have come to the [National Endowment for the Arts] if it was just about padding around in the agency,' he said, and worrying about which nonprofits deserve more funds.' We need to have a seat at the big table with the grown-ups. Art should be part of the plans to come out of this recession.' 'If we're going to have any traction at all,' he added, 'there has to be a place for us in domestic policy.' He talked about starting a program that he called 'Our Town,' which would provide home equity loans and rent subsidies for living and working spaces to encourage artists to move to downtown areas. The program would also help finance public art projects and performances and promote architectural preservation in downtown areas". Mr.Landesman has already shown himself to be an outspoken, forceful, and passionate promoter of the arts. He has a loud and bold style.

Fractional Gifts Bill introduced in Senate
The Wall Street Journal, 8/82009
"Donating art to museums could soon become attractive again for wealthy collectors. Reacting to museums' complaints of sharp declines in art donations, a bill announced [August 7] by Sen. Charles Schumer, a New York Democrat, could revive the practice of so-called fractional gifts by making the process easier and more tax-advantageous. Before the 2006 Pension Protection Act, collectors were allowed a tax break when they donated a work of art incrementally, giving away a certain percentage of rights to the work each year. Pieces like the Hope Diamond, given to Washington's Smithsonian Institution, and New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art's Annenberg Collection can be attributed to fractional giving. Restrictions in the act prevented donors from realizing tax benefits on the appreciation of the art's value and limited the time allotted to complete the donation to 10 years." read the article

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