For about 350 people, it was an evening of politicking and performances at the Elsinore Theatre on Monday, Feb. 27.
The event was the formal launch of the new Oregon Arts and Culture Caucus, a group of legislators determined to improve state funding.
Those attending the free event sampled top-quality ice cream and other treats and watched performers, from the master rope artist Antonio Huerta to members of the Salem Trumpet Quintet, a group of high school players who are on the way to Colorado later this month for national competition.
The founding members of the caucus from the Legislature were there plus another half-dozen or so who came for the show.
With the 2023 Legislature underway, the caucus is backing:
•$50 million in recovery funding for arts and culture organizations and grants to be administered by counties and tribal governments through House Bill 2459.
•$200 million in lottery funds invested to generate about $10 million in awards that would go to some of the 1,600 arts and culture nonprofits in Oregon through House Bill 2498.
•$10 million increase in funding for the Oregon Arts Commission.
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