Friday, February 8, 2013

LOCAL2013: League of Independent Theater Meet The Candidates Forum

If you have ever said that you create "socially engaged work," read this whole post.

If you have ever expressed frustration that public officials don't care about the arts, read this whole post.

If you want to know how to have a political voice in the 2013 city-wide elections, read this whole post.

The League of Independent Theater, of which I am a member, has just launched the publicity for a Meet the Candidates event, March 12, 7PM. From the press release:

Members of LIT will get to vote on the candidates they think will best serve the indie theater territory. LIT's Political Research and Outreach Committee has created the Performing Arts Platform below. Candidates from every city race are being invited to participate. 2013 is an important year in terms of New York City elections. We hope you will be able to attend this event. Your attendance and passion can have an impact.
 Here's the platform:
As a pro-performing arts elected official, I will work to: 
1. Create access to low-cost and/or no-cost Community Facilities Spaces that are currently available and remain unused throughout the City through the creation of a Community Facilities Space Database.
2. Create access to empty and unused City property to be re-purposed as temporary rehearsal, office and (if appropriate), performance space.
3. Include non-profit performance venues in the favorable electricity and utility rates enjoyed by religious institutions and the VFW.
4. Implement a proposal that would reduce or eliminate property tax assessments for those non-profit organizations that have an artistic mission and/or rent performance space to similar non-profit performing arts groups with artistic missions of their own. This proposal was unanimously ratified by all twelve (12) Manhattan Community Boards.
5. Secure affordable permanent low-cost housing for working artists. In addition, work to provide access to affordable healthcare for these artists, depending on the status and reach of the Affordable Care Act at the time of negotiations.
6. Support the commission of an economic impact study for the independent theater territory.
7. Work with the Department of Cultural Affairs to expand the Cultural Institutions Group to include the independent theater sector’s anchor venues.
8. Install plaques at sites of historical import and rename streets after the founders of the independent and Off-Off Broadway community.
Here are the candidates who have confirmed so far:

Tom Allon (Candidate for Mayor)
Julie Menin (Manhattan Borough President)
Letitia James (Public Advocate)
Corey Johnson (CC Manhattan 3)
Yetta Kurland (CC Manhattan 3)
Mel Wymore (CC Manhattan 6)
Cheryl Pahaham (CC Manhattan 7)
Angel Molina (CC Bronx 8)
Matthew Silverstein (CC Queens 19)
Kimberly Council (CC Brooklyn 37)
If you want to go, which you should, you can RSVP here.