Increased funding for music recovery in Victorian budget
Contemporary music’s post-pandemic recovery got a slight boost in funding in Victoria’s 2020/21 state budget, announced November 24.
In a $49 billion budget, the arts received $220 million “for creative spaces, organisations and workers to rebuild, recover and bring their creative ideas to life”.
Aimed at fixing the economy, $19.8 million in capital and operational funding is to help state-owned cultural institutions and venues recover, adapt and meet the challenges ahead.
This includes projects to make venues COVIDSafe and enable outdoor events with gigs.
A further $9 million will support hard-hit independent creatives and microbusinesses, regional touring and the contemporary music industry, as well as First Peoples focused initiatives.
“This includes funding to offer new rounds of the Sustaining Creative Workers, Creators Fund and Music Works programs in the new year,” Treasurer Tim Pallas announced.
About $5 million is earmarked for live music in regional and peri-urban communities.
The Government also invested $17.2 million for summer and autumn programs at state-owned centres including the Sidney Myer Music Bowl and the Geelong Arts Centre.
This activation funding also supports programming at organisations including Melbourne International Comedy Festival and Midsumma.
Businesses will receive subsidies for hiring women over the age of 45.
More women lost their jobs (109,000) between March and September, compared to men (70,000) because more women work in industries that were hardest hit.
Female entrepreneurs in these areas will have access to an investment fund.
In other good news for Victoria’s live music sector, restrictions were relaxed for venues.
Those under 200m2 can have one per 2sqm (max 50 people) while those over 200m2 can have one per 4sqm (max 150 people).
Performers must wear facemasks while performing indoors unless singing or playing a brass/woodwind instrument.
Outdoor venues can have up to 300 patrons, who must be seated and indoor seated venues like theatres can increase capacity to 150.
Outdoor venues and stadiums can operate at 50% capacity, with a maximum of 500 people.
Rehearsal and recording studios under 80m2 can have one per 2sqm (max 20 people) and those over 80m2 can have one per 2sqm (max 150 people).