Eastern CT Delegation Report on Arts & Culture – May 30 2021 Legislative Session

American Rescue Plan (ARP) Municipal Aid – Request for 1% to Arts & Culture

Americans for the Arts – State of CT Report AFTA State_CT Red Alert


The Legislative Office Building and Capitol are closed until further notice. Legislative session will conduct most business virtually.
You can watch livestreams of committee meetings, and there will be opportunities to participate in public hearings using Zoom.
  • Legislators Contact List
  • Committee Representation
  • Committee Meeting & Event Schedule
  • Bill Information & Tracking
  • Testifying at a Public Hearing
  • Media Sources (CT-N, Livestream, YouTube)
Technical Considerations
Best Practices for Virtual Experiences


There are two ways to participate in this process:

Testify in person – learn more by clicking HERE and HERE
And/or Submit written testimony –

It is important to personalize your testimony, but below are our key recommendations for this legislative session.


In Southeastern CT (New London County), arts and culture:

  • Generate $168 million annually, support 4,460 (FTE) jobs and attract 3.2 million attendees annually
  • Improve quality of life and contribute to Southeastern CT’s economy
  • Create vibrant rural and urban communities
  • Help to attract and retain residents, employers and employees
  • Are a cornerstone to the tourism industry


Tourism Fund – The Tourism Fund invests in the Connecticut experience – building vibrant communities, attracting tourists and employers, and boosting our economy.

What is it? The Tourism Fund (TF) is a non-lapsing special fund, separate from the general fund, that is solely funded by a dedicated revenue source.

How is it funded? CT levies a 15% occupancy tax on hotel stays up to 30 days in length. 10% of the total tax revenue collected by DRS is deposited into the TF after every quarter.

What does TF fund? The TF fund invests in arts, culture and tourism through a variety of line items in the budget appropriated by legislators. TF currently funds:

  • CT Office of the Arts (Arts Commission) – *state investment matched by nearly $1M federal National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) dollars
    • Grants to arts and cultural organizations, artists, and community arts projects
    • Statewide initiatives (Arts Workforce Initiative, Arts Day, etc.)
    • Designated Regional Service Organizations
  • CT Office of Tourism (Statewide Tourism Marketing)
    •, social media, marketing of CT in other states, research and data
    • Statewide initiatives (CT Open House Day, The Big E, Made in CT)
    • Tourism Districts (eastern, central, western)
  • Arts, Cultural & Tourism Direct Line Items (individual organizations and consortiums)
  • CT Humanities – * state investment matched by $800k in federal National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) funding
    • Grants and support services for institutions in the humanities, including but not limited to libraries, museums and historical and cultural societies and associations

How does TF benefit CT? The TF investments provide:

  • Operating support to anchor institutions that drive economic and community development and tourism
  • Program and project support to arts and cultural institutions events, community programs, arts education and local arts projects and initiatives that help attract and retain residents, employers and employees
  • Funding to the Office of the Arts and CT Humanities is re-granted through hundreds of competitive grants statewide reaching nearly every municipality
  • Support for the nine Designated Regional Service Organizations to maintain a statewide network of arts and cultural agencies
  • Tourism marketing to position the state as a prime destination for leisure and business travelers

What is unique about TF? Legislators cannot “sweep” funds from TF, unless this was mandated through legislation and TF, like all special funds, is not subject to potential general fund rescissions from the governor

What if there is more or less money in TF? Revenue collection + deposits into the TF are administrative while the spending + budget process are legislative; meaning:

  • The biannual budget is set legislatively based on the estimated size of TF
  • If TF has more or less money than budgeted for an upcoming year, the governor + legislators will decide how to accommodate for that change during budget process





Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: S.B. 146 An Act Authorizing Sports Wagering, Online Casino Gaming, Online Lottery and Online Keno
Testimony SB 146 Cultural Coalition 3.2.2021

Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: Governor’s Proposed FY 2022-2023 Budget
Testimony Approps Comm Gov’s Proposed FY2-23 Budget SCCC 2.18.21

Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: H.B. 6119 An Act Concerning Arts, Culture and Tourism Funding
Testimony Commerce Comm HB 6119 SCCC 2.10.21

Cultural Coalition Testimony H.B. 6103 An Act Concerning Property Tax Exemptions For Property Used For Charitable Purposes
Testimony H.B. 6103 Planning and Dev Comm_Nonprofit Tax_ SCCC Feb 2 2021 FINAL


Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: Municipal Cultural Districts
Testimony Planning and Dev Comm_Cultural Districts_ SCCC Mar 21 2019

Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: Nonprofit Property Tax Exemption
Testimony Planning and Dev Comm_Nonprofit Tax_ SCCC Mar 6 2019 FINAL

Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: DECD Funding for Arts & Culture
Testimony Appropriations Comm_SCCC Feb 27 2019 FINAL

Cultural Coalition Action Regarding Comprehensive Tax Reform
SECT_Tax Reform Letter Nov 17.2017

Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: DECD Funding for Arts & Culture
SCCC Testimony Governor’s Budget 1.17.2017

Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: DECD Funding for CT Humanities
Testimony CT Humanities DECD- SCCC 2017

Cultural Coalition Testimony Re: CT Percent for Art Funding
Testimony SB0373 Percent for Art 2017


To view the pdf of our presentation at our February 2017 legislative breakfast, SECT Cultural Coalition- Leg Presentation-Full 2017

To view the pdf of our presentation at our first legislative breakfast in April 2015, SECT Cultural Coalition- Leg Presentation-Full.