Council OKs $10K for Ann Arbor Street Art Fair

The Ann Arbor Street Art Fair will receive $10,000 of funding as part of next year’s FY 2015 budget, when it is presented to the council in April 2014 by city administrator Steve Powers. The council directed Powers at its Dec. 16, 2013 meeting to include the art fair funding in the FY 2105 budget. The city’s FY 2015 begins on July 1, 2014.

The memo supporting the council’s resolution notes that the AASAF has run an annual deficit for several years. An email sent to Christopher Taylor (Ward 3) and Jane Lumm (Ward 2) by Maureen Riley, executive director of the AASAF, specified those annual deficits as follows:

  • 2013 – anticipated to be approximately ($8,000)
  • 2012 – ($6,316)
  • 2011 – ($5,769)
  • 2010 – ($6,040)
  • 2009 – ($33,693)

Lumm and Taylor sponsored the resolution. Lumm is a former AASAF board member.

The rationale for providing support for the AASAF, but not the other three art fairs, is based on the additional costs the AASAF has to pay to the University of Michigan, as well as the provision by AASAF of community benefits at some of its venues, which reduce its opportunity to gain revenue. Those programs include the Demo Zone, Art Activity Zones, Street Painting Exhibition, and the Fountain Stage. The background memo also indicates that the other three art fairs have indicated written support for the $10,000 to the AASAF.

The dollar amount roughly corresponds to the allocated cost to the AASAF from the total that is charged by the city for various services to the four art fairs collectively.

At the council’s Dec. 2, 2013 meeting, Taylor had announced his intent to bring forward the resolution asking that an additional $10,000 be included in the city’s FY 2015 budget.

For details about the council’s deliberations on this item, see The Chronicle’s live updates from the Dec. 16 meeting.

This brief was filed from the city council’s chambers on the second floor of city hall, located at 301 E. Huron. A more detailed report will follow: [link]