Daily Archives: February 2, 2008

Arts funding threatened; attend Arts Congress, Feb. 4

Join hundreds of other advocates from all over the state at the 2008 Arizona Arts Congress, Monday, February 4, 2008, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Senate Lawn, Arizona State Capitol.  Meet with legislators and talk about the arts’ positive impact on quality of life, cultural understanding, education, sense of community, and the bottom line contribution to our state’s economy.  Click here for more information.

State budget deficits are projected at between $1.2 to $1.9 billion over the next four years.  Reductions to the Arizona Arts Commission budget are already in play.  Proposed cuts range from $100,000 to $6.8 million.  What does this mean to the arts in Arizona?  Simple: Reductions in grants to arts organizations, arts education programs, and community arts projects throughout the state.

Arts professionals, administrators, board leadership, and board members must weigh in and join this effort in order to demonstrate:

  • Solidarity in the Arizona arts community.
  • The arts community understands the economic value it brings to the state.
  • The arts community has a strong voice and intends to use it as these budget negotiations move forward.

Council members hold Phoenix crime summit

Crime scene [Source: Theresa Pace, Special to the Republic] — Phoenix residents and officials identified and addressed crime issues at a crime summit meeting at the Valley Garden Center Saturday morning.  The residents said blight, street vendors, block watches, theft, graffitisex-offenders, drug crimes, identity theft, and liquor licenses are the areas they are most concerned with.  District 4 councilman Tom Simplot and District 7 councilman Michael Nowakowski hosted the 5th Annual District 4 Crime Summit.  The meeting, which about 50 people attended, was not only an opportunity for the residents of District 4 and surrounding areas to voice their concerns about the crime in their neighborhood but also to work as a community to come up with possible solutions.  By the end of the meeting, each issue was addressed and solutions to the problem were recommended.

One suggestion was the creation of an online neighborhood watch database that shows which neighborhood actively keep a look out for crime near their homes.  All of the concerns and recommendations will be presented to the Phoenix City Council, Simplot said.  Officials said ideas from previous summits have been turned into actual programs. One example given was a shopping cart retrieval system that helped rid neighborhoods of abandoned carts.

Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard and Phoenix Police Chief Jack Harris were also in attendance.  “One of the most powerful thing you have are citizens engaged in fighting crime,” said Goddard.  [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

ASU’s downtown campus poised to have new leader

Debra Friedman, ASU[Source: Jahna Berry, Arizona Republic] — Arizona State University is tapping a new leader for a powerful post within its high-profile downtown Phoenix campus.  Debra Friedman, 52, the dean of the College of Public Programs, is likely to become the new public face for the downtown campus.  The Arizona Board of Regents could vote on the change as early as March, Friedman said.  If regents approve the change, Friedman will become the vice president of the campus and an influential figure in downtown Phoenix development.  ASU’s downtown campus, bankrolled by $220 million from taxpayers, is a critical anchor for the revitalization of Phoenix’s core.  [Note: Read the full article here.]