About the Arts Council
WHAT WE BELIEVE
We believe the arts are central to every element we value most in a modern society including: human understanding; cultural and civic pride; strong communities; excellent schools; lifelong learning; creative expression and economic opportunity.
OUR MISSION: GIVEN TO US BY THE PEOPLE OF NEW JERSEY
In 1966, the legislature passed and the governor signed a law creating the NJ State Council on the Arts and directing us to do all that is necessary and appropriate to: support, encourage, and foster public interest in the arts; enlarge public and private resources devoted to the arts; promote freedom of expression in the arts; and facilitate the inclusion of art in every public building in New Jersey.
THE GOALS WE HAVE SET FORTH TO ACCOMPLISH THIS MISSION
- Build and strengthen New Jersey communities through the arts.
- Advance quality arts education and lifelong learning for everyone.
- Broaden, deepen and diversify arts participation for people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.
- Increase support for New Jersey artists and arts organizations.
- Improve access to and the use of technology in the New Jersey arts industry.
- Increase public awareness of the value of the arts.
- Employ Arts Council resources to leverage other support for the arts.
HOW WE ARE FUNDED
Public support for the arts in New Jersey is drawn from a dedicated, renewable revenue source--the Hotel/Motel Occupancy Fee--established in 2003. Under this law, 22.68% of the fees collected shall be annually allocated to the Arts Council with a minimum annual appropriation of $16 million. Additionally, the Arts Council receives an annual, competitive federal grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
The New Jersey State Council on the Arts is a division of the New Jersey Department of State, created in 1966 by Public Law Chapter 214 and consists of 17 members, all appointed by the Governor for terms of three years, and three ex-officio members. Since its creation, the Council’s volunteer members and professional staff have worked to improve the quality of life in New Jersey through strategic support for the arts.
With annual appropriations from the State Legislature as well as annual federal grants from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the Council designs and carries out a dynamic program of financial and technical support services for New Jersey artists and nonprofit organizations. The Council has priority programs in arts education, artists' services, community arts development, folk arts, cultural facilities development, community cultural planning and arts marketing.
The Council works with a broad array of partner organizations in carrying out this work, all of which is governed by strategic plans made in the broader context of Arts Plan New Jersey. Among its programs, the Council administers the Arts Inclusion Act through which works of art are commissioned and installed in new state construction as well as the 1987 Cultural Centers Bond Act through which cultural centers are built and improved.
The Council's programs and services have earned national recognition for excellence, innovation and responsiveness to community needs.