DeSoto City Council Votes For Stronger Cultural Arts Program

DeSoto center

DeSoto Looks To Engage Residents In Supporting Arts & Culture Program

DESOTO – The DeSoto City Council voted unanimously to accept a Proposed Arts Policy and Guiding Principles Master Plan for creating a stronger Cultural Arts Program in the city.

The Arts Commission outlined the proposed Arts Policy and Guiding Principles for the City of DeSoto at their August 2 meeting, which was accepted.

At Tuesday night’s meeting, Marjorie Reese from Desoto’s Art Commission outlined the final draft to the city council.

The overall message Reese gave was a nod to the plan’s importance in engaging resident’s support for the city’s arts and culture program while also allowing for everyone to take part in the process.

“This document represents a set of policies that will allow you to grow,” Reese said.

Reese also explained there had been much time spent focusing on process and establishing the way the program would work effectively and how the funding in the city would be managed.

Arts Policy and Guiding Principles

The Arts Policy and Guiding Principles include an explanation of the vision, mission, and equity statement for the City of DeSoto Cultural Arts Program; Guiding principles for the Cultural Arts Program; Policies and standards for the Cultural Arts Program, which include Grant Making/Contracting Categories for the DeSoto Artists Lab, Organizational Development Grants, Arts and Cultural Project Grants, Arts Education Program Grants and a Public Art Program.

As arts and culture are highlighted and the grant making categories become more defined, Reese said this in turn would allow for greater access and visibility for DeSoto artists.

The creation of an artist residency program was discussed as well as how artists could better utilize the Market Place space where a potential exists for artists.

Also included in the plan was a Grant Application Review and Contracting Process; an establishment of a Grant Review Panel; an outline of the role and responsibilities of the DeSoto Arts Commission and the overall plan for rolling out the program to the public.

Funding for implementation of the FY2021-22 phase of the Cultural Arts Master Plan Policy and Guiding Principles is included in Fund 221 – Arts Grants 221-55210-001-001.

“This piece is important to support the energy that is already alive and well in our city around cultural arts and entertainment,” concluded DeSoto Mayor Rachel Proctor. “I am glad to see this come forth.”