I have not met with the group referred to by the Deputy. Ongoing correspondence has however been exchanged with my Department both from and on behalf of the group.
I recently announced a new capital investment scheme for arts and culture centres across the country with funding of €4.7m available for allocation. Applications are now being invited for funding under the new scheme which is titled the Cultural Capital Scheme 2019-2022. The Scheme is for arts and culture facilities that operate as not-for-profit organisations throughout the country and that have a clearly defined arts and culture focus.
The new scheme was informed by the recently published strategic Review of Arts Centres and Venues by the Arts Council & the County and City Management Association (CCMA) as well as the Arts Council's published Arts Centre Policy and Strategy 2019 which sets out its funding criteria for arts centres from 2020 onwards.
A particular focus of this scheme will be its emphasis on the reduction of carbon footprints to dovetail with the Government’s action on climate change. Projects providing additional capacity for artists and artistic production particularly in arts centres will also be favoured. The Scheme builds on the success of the Arts and Culture Capital Scheme 2016-2018 which saw grants allocated to 134 organisations in 26 counties to refurbish and enhance their facilities. This funding is provided from a €40m capital investment allocation for local arts and culture infrastructure contained in Project Ireland 2040 “Investing in our Culture, Language & Heritage 2018-2027'.
Applications will be made online at www.licences.ie. Applications are being invited under three separate Streams as follows.
- Stream A will offer grants up to €50,000 for small enhancement/expansion/refurbishment projects which may involve construction works to arts and culture facilities and/or upgrading of equipment.
- Stream B will offer grants from €50,000 up to €300,000 for larger enhancement /expansion/ refurbishment projects involving construction works to arts and culture facilities.
- Stream C will be a separate scheme aimed at the upgrading of visual artists’ workspaces. Applications for this Stream will be invited separately by Visual Artists Ireland.
Further information on the Cultural Capital Scheme 2019 – 2022 is available on my Department’s website.
The group referred to by the Deputy has been notified of the new Scheme by my Department.