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Arts Stimulus Funding & the Art Economy Part 1: By the Numbers
Jul 8, 2009 Art21 | Arts writer Hrag Vartanian gives a general snapshot of the current figures in historical context, and this list gives more detail about the grants dispensed by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.  An interview with Congressional Arts Caucus Co-Chairs Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Rep. Todd Russell Platts (R-PA) about federal funding for the arts will comprise Part 2, set to be published on Art21 Thursday.  –James David Morgan

Nonprofit seeks restitution from Fumo
Jul 8, 2009 Philadelphia Inquirer | Pennsylvania State Senator Vincent Fumo’s favorite charity-run by his political staff and associates and often funded by corporate donors such as utility companies that tended to have business in front of Fumo’s legislative committees-is now being put out of business as he himself heads to prison for a possible term of 21 to 27 years for 137 counts of conspiracy, fraud, tax violations, and obstruction of justice. One would think that the Citizens Alliance for Better Neighborhoods, given its years of dubious provenance, would go quietly into the night in response to the AG’s move to revoke its corporate charter. The CABN exec, Ruth Arnao, now contends that her nonprofit is owed $2.1 million that it spent in legal fees. Oh, some of those fees were spent to defend the executive director herself, an aide to Fumo, who has been convicted of 45 counts of fraud against her own nonprofit (and she’ll face a prison sentence of between 10 and 14 years). Do not go gentle into that good night, Fumo and Arnao, we’re sure there’s more trouble you can causeand costfor the taxpayers of Pennsylvania and the credibility of the nonprofit sector. Rick Cohen

Nonprofits oppose cuts
Jul 8, 2009; The Advocate | The city-parish government in Lafayette, Louisiana is cutting funding for service nonprofits in order to put more money into police and fire services for the next 3 years. An array of service and cultural groups testified against the proposal. The Lafayette Consolidated Government council’s proposal is also to give the responsibility of administering remaining funding for nonprofits to the Community Foundation of Acadiana, which was well known during Katrina for administering a lot of disaster relief and recovery funding. The CF’s exec didn’t give the council a yes on the spot, however, according to the Advocate’s report, but in another paper (The Independent Weekly, July 7, 2009), the ED appeared a bit more open to the notion: “We’re only promoting that if there’s an opportunity for us to enhance this process, if there’s an opportunity for us to enhance the good nonprofits that do such good work, then we want to participate somehow, someway. Ideally, we would like to be in a position to have discretionary dollars that we can grant on a competitive basis. We’re interested in enhancing quality of life in our community and if our experience, if our expertise can offer some value to the process, then we want to participate. If it can’t offer any value, we really don’t want to participate.” —Rick Cohen

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