Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County (AHCMC)

SurveQuestion 10

Please use the space provided below to share with voters any other elements of your arts and humanities platform not captured above.


Roger Berliner
- County Council - The arts are particularly important in District 1. We are not only home to some incredible artists, but we are home to some incredible art institutions: Strathmore, Imagination Stage, Glen Echo Park, Roundhouse Theater ñ just to name a few. Earlier in my time on the Council, I served as the Councilís Lead Member for Arts, Libraries, and the Humanities precisely because of the huge role the arts plays in the life of our community. I have worked hard to fund the arts as much as our budget situation would allow, meet regularly with the leaders of these important institutions, and am personally committed to their missions. If re-elected, I will maintain this quality of service to the arts & humanities. You are vital to the quality of life we are fortunate to enjoy in Montgomery County.

Beth Daly - County Council - Arts & Humanities programs are often among the first to be cut during economic downturns. This is shortsighted. The ongoing place of arts and humanities will only be insured if there is strong public demand for it, and if its value is recognized. This can best be assured through continued and steady public support from the County for Arts and Humanities programs that reach and improve the lives of broad sectors of the public, which I will strongly support.

Marc Elrich - County Council - I think the arts and humanities play a large part in our culture. I grew up going to the free museums in the District, my elementary classes in DC got to see Leonard Bernstein conduct the orchestra and I even played in a rock band. When I started traveling, I really came to appreciate what it meant to have the kind of free and ready access that I grew up with. Encouraging people to both view and engage in the arts, I think, helps to create a more rounded human experience. As a teacher, I could see the power that being able to express yourself artistically held for kids - being able to have an artistic voice is a great source of pride and self-esteem. So I want the County, in the schools and in the broader community, to foster art and creativity. And I think that is part of the government's responsibility to provide a rich environment that our residents can partake in, whether as viewers or as participants. So I've always started with the assumption that this is something the County should support and I've been consistent in doing that.

Nancy Floreen - County Council - Arts and humanities truly add to the vitality and quality of life in Montgomery County. Thanks for making it happen

Evan Glass - County Council - As a member of the Nighttime Economy Task Force, I understand how important a vibrant arts scene is to our community.

Dick Jurgena - County Council - I believe the arts and humanities have the opportunity to provide entertainment for all classes of people, rich, poor, educated, illiterate. And that the people who like what they get will support the venue. While I think government should not censor the arts, I also do not think it is up to the government to support a group that does not provide the subject matter the audiences appreciate.

George Leventhal - County Council - For the last 12 years as chairman of the County Council's Health and Human Services Committee, I have been the council's primary champion of the arts and humanities. I have successfully ensured that arts and humanities funding is awarded on the basis of merit, not politics. I have supported creative methods of increasing arts and humanities funding, including the new capital grants program. In the FY 2015 budget which just passed the County Council, we added $210,000 in operating support for the Arts and Humanities Council above the already-generous recommendation of the County Executive.

Tom Moore - County Council - The arts and humanities are truly universal, but until we have a universal translator, language is not. Ideally, our offerings would be in multiple languagesóand available to people with various physical abilities as wellóto be accessible to all. This is one reason I strongly support free, readily available English-language classes. The ones available have a waiting list, in sum, of more than 2,500. Libraries are an essential service ñ theyíre the home of the Great Books, for starters. Books, magazines, newspapers, CDs, DVDs, and childrenís programs are just the beginning. Our libraries open cultural worlds for all ages. (I essentially learned to read at the Davis branch.) Most of our public libraries have English conversation clubs, and there are conversation clubs in several other languages as well. Most of our libraries host book clubs, too, which keep the cultural conversation going. These are great services that Montgomery County provides its residentsówith no admission feeóand for the most part they are unheralded. I felt strongly enough on this issue to have led the charge to get Rockville Memorial Library fully funded and rebuilt on time. I want to see library hours restored now that county revenues have essentially recovered from the recession.

Nancy Navarro - County Council - As a manner big the HHS community for the past 5 years, I have been a staunch supporter if the arts and Humanities Council. Even through the recession, I consistently fought for funding and support.

Jeffrey Thames - County Council - I love the arts. I am a humanitarian! This is why I'm seeking office. To help people realize other outlets for expressing themselves. I modeled professionally for over 10 years, and after modeling I moved behind the camera as a photographer. I would bring these experiences with me to be an encouragement to so many people in the community.

Duchy Trachtenberg - County Council - I believe the Arts community is essential to our growth and vitality as a community. Arts community is a core part of the Montgomery County economic engine. Arts community brings in more dollars than it receives. Arts community spend $76 m on salaries and goods in Montgomery County. Arts community brings in an additional $74 m in revenue to businesses in county. Therefore the Arts are an integral fabric of Montgomery County and no place is that more evident than in District 1.

Tim Willard - County Council - The arts and humanities community should be allowed to play a greater role in public schools to provide a more rounded education for the students.

Phil Andrews - County Executive - I have been a long-time supporter of including people with disabilities in community activities, including in the arts, and have been involved with organizations like Artstream for years.

Douglas Duncan - County Executive - We live in a wonderful community. Iím so proud to have led the effort to bring in so many arts facilities into this community, like Strathmore, AFI Silver, Imagination Stage, Olney Theater, Black Rock Center for the Arts and Glen Echo Park to name a few, to make Montgomery County a regional center for the arts and a statewide center for the arts here. You know the Washington Post Editorial Board correctly identified Mr. Leggett as the candidate of the status quo. And one of the reasons Iím running for County Executive is the status quo is not good enough for us. Weíve got to do better. We have real challenges in front of us. Our schools are overcrowded. The achievement gap is widening. Weíve lost more jobs than any other county in the state of Maryland since last July. Weíre an also ran in job growth. The Silver Spring Transit Center is 4 years late, $30 million over budget and there is still no plan on how to fix it. We need a hands-on County Executive with a proven record of getting things done. And thatís what I bring to you and thatís what I bring to the people of this county: the ability to get things done, to bring people together to make things happen and move us forward. One of the great things about Montgomery County is theyíre always looking to the future. Weíre always looking 10, 20, 30 years ahead, and if we donít have change, if we donít get out of this status quo our future 10 or 20 years from now is not going to be as bright as our past. I ask you to go to www.DougDuncan.com, look at my Leadership in Action Agenda that talks about bringing gigabit internet speeds, talks about infrastructure, transportation, education, all of the quality of life issues that we talk about and get a better understanding of my policy platform as you move to the future. Thank you very much.

Sidney Katz - County Executive - I fully support the arts and humanities and believe it is an important part of our community. It teaches as well as entertains and enhances our quality of life.

Ike Leggett - County Executive - Many of these questions I have answered thus far reflect the arts and humanities in our communities and how we can get economic support. This is good, but my support has been a dual support- economic but also supporting the arts is the right thing to do. It inspires us, and makes us feel good about others and ourselves. It celebrates our diversity. It motivates us and helps educates us and sustains us. And informs us. ï There is no greater champion for the arts in government than Catherine Leggett, who works tirelessly on their behalf of the arts community The Executive Ball for the Arts and Humanities continues under Catherineís leadership. In 2013, the ball raised over $150,000 from private donors. ï In an effort to stimulate even more private support for the Arts and Humanities, I proposed and the Council supported $200,000 in matching county funds for private contributions. These funds matched $155,000 from the Exec Ball and $45,000 from the Arts and Humanities new fund raising effort, Power2Give. The net result of this is an additional $400,000 available for the arts and humanities in FY14 and likely in FY 15 also. ï We support the Arts and Humanities Council staff, which provide technical assistance to arts groups and administer the Countyís arts grants program. Iím grateful to Suzan Jenkins who joined us in 2008 and to the volunteers on her board. ï As CE, I have supported funding for the arts in the operating and capital budgets. While some reductions were necessary during the great recession, we have been able to restore funding levels to pre-recession levels. ï In another first, last year, working with the county council, we created an Arts CIP intended to assist arts and humanities organizations with capital costs. The CIP was formally created this year in the Biannual CIP with 6 million dollars, approximately one million dollars per year. The project has already assisted many organizations with HVAC, dance floors, handicap accessibility, lighting and other equipment. ï We have supported existing public and private venues for the Arts and helped open new ones such as The Fillmore; the Betty Mae Kramer and Terrace Garden Art Galleries; and The Bethesda Blues and Jazz Club. ï We will soon convert the old Silver Spring police station into another first for Montgomery county, affordable artist space including housing, studio and display space, and an artist incubator.

Jim Shalleck - County Executive - We must bring in the private sector to help support arts and humanities in the County. Sponsorships, advertising and other incentives to promote business and to encourage their financial support must be aggressively pursued.

 

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