Andrew is a strong supporter of the arts and secured $4m from the Federal Government for the new Moonah Arts Centre in 2012, $3.5m for the $7m Guilford Young College Creative Arts Link in 2013 and $1.65m to convert the historic South Hobart Primary School into a community and cultural centre in 2013.
The Federal Government, as well as state and local governments, need to invest significantly more in the arts as such investments provide countless social and economic benefits. Arts organisations in regional areas also need to be better supported, and to that end the Federal Government must re-fund Regional Arts Australia.
Andrew has been a vocal critic of the Government’s decision to strip money from the Australia Council for the Arts as it will have a disproportionate impact on small to medium arts organisations right across the country, especially in Tasmania where the arts sector is made up almost entirely of small and medium organisations. The decision to restore some of this money and to create the Catalyst program goes nowhere near far enough to remedying this shortfall.
Arts funding arrangements should be made at arm’s length from Government and by experts and people who understand the importance of the arts in places like Tasmania.