Give the Arts a voice in the Long-Term Plan

Balancing the books is important, but so are the Arts

Along with many other local government bodies in New Zealand, Hamilton City Council is facing the significant challenge of trying to balance its books while minimising the impact on ratepayers. 

Council is seeking feedback on their 10 Year Plan which currently includes a proposal to substantially cut arts and tourism funding – both of which deliver significant social, cultural, and economic benefits to our community. 

The Hamilton Arts Festival Toi Ora ki Kirikiriroa is a grateful recipient of Council’s Major Event Sponsorship fund.

That we have managed to not only survive inherited debt, a world pandemic, an unprecedented summer of rain and still be here is credit to our phenomenal funders and sponsors who understand that both public and private investment in the arts is for the inherent value of culture; life-enhancing, entertaining, defining of our personal and national identities.

What’s more, this year’s festival truly secured Hamilton as home to the largest and most magical regional arts festival in New Zealand. Attendance was estimated at 43,500 of which 28.3% were from outside of the Waikato injecting $3.6M directly into Hamilton’s economy.

$238,000 was paid directly to this year’s artists making the festival a significant contributor to our creative economy.

Like so many of our other fellow not-for-profit organisations, we have been punching way above our weight for many years operating under-resourced and on shoestring budgets. This is no longer sustainable without appropriate funding that reflects the importance of arts, culture and tourism to our community. 

The cuts currently being proposed by Council are minuscule compared to the scale of the challenge Council faces. However, these funds represent our lifeline. Cuts, no matter how small, could ring the death knell for any or all of us.

So, we need your voice!

Submissions close this Sunday April 21st.

We’d love for you to take the time to join the conversation and let the Council know how important the Hamilton Arts Festival Toi Ora ki Kirikiriroa is to our city’s future.

For more information and to make your submission, visit the links below

Make a submission in support of the Arts
Read more about the Long Term Plan

Feedback on the Long Term Plan proposal closes Sunday 21st April