Toronto Budget 2022
Information on the 2022 Toronto City Operating Budget, links, public hearings and calls to action are all here.
On February 17, Toronto City Council passed its 2022 operating budget of $15 billion.
Included in the budget is an enhancement of $1.83 million to Economic Development and Culture, of which Toronto Arts Council will receive a much-needed $500,000, or 2% increase. For more information on the City Budget.
As we approach the two year mark of COVID-19, with its impact affecting every item in the City’s budget, this small increase to arts funding levels is an important endorsement of the value the arts bring to the City.
While municipal support for arts grants is always important, in 2022 there are more reasons than ever for City Council support arts funding:
- The arts, entertainment and recreation sector is among the hardest hit by pandemic closures, in terms of number of jobs as well as total number of hours worked – see CAPACOA’s most recent compilation of COVID statistics
- The arts, entertainment and recreation sector is expected to be the last to return to pre-COVID economic conditions
- Throughout the pandemic Toronto Arts Council has responded quickly and effectively, offering artists new funding opportunities (COVID Response Fund) while expediting support to the city’s arts organizations.
- In 2021, TAC launched a recovery grants program offering additional support for pandemic related costs to arts organizations reopening in the coming months
- In 2021 TAC rolled out a new TAC Black / African-diasporic arts grant program with the first installment of grants totalling $850,000
- Even before COVID, artists have struggled to live and work in Toronto. See the Toronto Arts Foundation 2019 booklet: Arts Stats 2019 - Going Without: Artists and Arts Workers in Our Creative City, making it clear that Toronto's artists face disproportionately high costs to live in Toronto (paying for both work space and essential training) while experiencing disproportionately low incomes.
- Finally – the city is depending on Toronto’s artists and arts organizations to re-engage the public in the life of our city when it is safe to do so – our artists will be key to bringing back the excitement and the vitality associated with Toronto which in turn will attract visitors once again.
On January 25, TAC’s President Jason Ryle, and Director & CEO Claire Hopkinson made deputations before Budget Committee. They thanked City Council for its continued support and asked City Council:
- to work with the sector to advocate for fairer pandemic regulations from the province;
- to support the sector in our federal advocacy work for a Guaranteed Basic Income;
- And, most importantly, to commit to working with the sector to develop a new, responsive Culture Plan that includes specific targets for funding, arts space and equity that will be sufficient to propel Toronto through the next decade.
2021 Budget Deputations