In Saturday’s Irish Times Deirdre Falvey had more to report on reactions to and analysis of the budget’s anticipated impact on the arts:
Reactions varied to the arts- budget cuts. Olivia Mitchell of Fine Gael was appalled at the cuts in capital spending for the national cultural institutions, an issue she has consistently drawn attention to, particularly the condition of the national archives, which are “a disgrace . . . They are run on a shoestring anyway, and they badly need investment. Now the Celtic tiger is gone. It’s a tragedy.” She was dismayed at the Arts Council cuts, and at how “jobs will go in that industry, as jobs in many organisations are barely viable. It’s a bad policy because to get value for money for all the facilities that have been built, you need to have the arts programmes to put in them.”
Labour’s Mary Upton criticised the decision to “slash the funding [to the department] by 22 per cent as a myopic soft option”. The ability of the Arts Council and the Sports Council to support the wider arts and sports community in every village and town has been damaged, she said.