In Wednesday’s (5/26) Stage (London), Alistair Smith writes, “Theatres and arts centres across the country are under threat of immediate cuts to their subsidies after Arts Council England was ordered to make £19 million of savings to its 2010/11 budget, with ACE warning it cannot guarantee funded organisations will be protected. … The cuts come as part of Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne’s attempt to curb government spending by £6.2 billion this year. All [Department for Culture, Media and Sport] bodies and the DCMS itself have been asked to find savings of 3% in their 2010/11 budgets. This would have represented cuts of £14 million for ACE, but it has been told to make a further £5 million of cuts—raising its percentage savings to around 4%. Speaking after the announcement, ACE chairman Liz Forgan said the organisation did not understand why it had been singled out. … Culture minister Ed Vaizey, however, told The Stage he was ‘confident’ the DCMS and ACE could work together to minimise the impact on regularly funded organisations. The DCMS has indicated it wants ACE to dip into its historic reserves to help meet the costs of the cuts—possibly covering significantly more than the extra £5 million.”

Posted May 27, 2010