Updated May 22, 2021, 1 a.m.
URGENT! May 27th is the deadline for proposed amendments for the City of Houston’s budget for 2021–22, and your participation at this time could make a crucial difference to ensure that arts funding is restored in Houston.
We are asking for 16 million dollars to restore and replace lost HOT revenue for the arts from 2020 & 2021 and we need your voice now!
Please reach out to YOUR local and at-large city council members before Thursday, May 27th. The sample text for your email is below, which you can also use for talking points for a follow up phone call (especially if you do not hear back). Email them again if they don’t reply.
Copy, personalize and send this sample email to your City Council Member & cc At-Large Council Members.
EMAIL SUBJECT: Use ARPA funds to Restore and Replace Lost Revenue for the Arts in Houston – $16 Million
Hello Council Members,
My name is [INSERT YOUR NAME] and I am a resident of DISTRICT [YOUR DISTRICT]. I am asking if you, my elected representatives, are willing to present an amendment to the Mayor’s budget, to ensure that American Rescue Plan Act funds are provided to the Houston Arts Alliance to replace lost Hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT) revenue. This would be to close the HOT revenue shortfall — a $16 million gap — for the last fiscal year and this upcoming fiscal year, to restore funding to FY19 levels. The City of Houston should stimulate and continue to invest in artists and smaller arts organizations with annual budgets under $10 million. These entities are struggling due to pandemic budget shortfalls, and according to the McKinsey Report on Small Business Recovery, will not be able to fully recover until 2025.
How do I find my city council representatives?
*if you live and work in different districts you may send emails to both of your representatives.