Monday’s federal budget announcement arrived with some good news on the Canadian arts and culture front. The first budget delivered in two years earmarked $300-million over two years to Canadian Heritage to help bolster an industry that suffered job losses near 35 per cent.
This new investment in the arts is in addition to $181.5-million that the government announced for live events and the arts in its 2020 Fall Economic Statement. The government also pledged $70 million over three years for the Canada Music Fund. This includes up to $50 million in 2021-22 to help the live music sector, including music venues.
— Kate Taylor (@thatkatetaylor) April 20, 2021
“Our industry has been devastated as a result of COVID-19. This support will help safeguard our nation’s critical cultural infrastructure – and the incredible people, artists and community whose passion and livelihood is live music. We look forward to working with the government to ensure it reaches each and every company and organization who needs it. With today’s historic budget, our government has helped us to believe in the future – and we can’t wait to get there, together,” Canadian Live Music Association President & CEO Erin Benjamin said in a release.
Other live music-related budget highlights include $200 million through the regional development agencies to support major festivals and $200 million through Canadian Heritage to support local festivals and other events.
Overall, the 2021 budget proposes $135 billion over the next five fiscal years to help combat the impact of the pandemic.