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[CALL TO ORDER]

[00:00:03]

5:36 PM ON JULY 19TH, 2021.

HELLO, EVERYONE.

AND WELCOME TO THIS MEETING OF THE ARTS COMMISSION FOR THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

TONIGHT'S MEETING IS A SPECIAL WORK SESSION WITH OUR CONSULTANT M OUR PARTNERS.

UM, WE DO NOT AT THIS TIME, HAVE ANYONE SIGNED UP FOR CITIZENS COMMUNICATION, SO I'M GOING TO DIVE RIGHT IN.

BOOM.

UM, SO YOU GOT TO WORD SESSION AND DISCUSSION THIS EVENING.

WE HAVE THE ABILITY, IF WE GET WRAPPED UP IN SOMETHING AND NEED TO SORT OF SET A WORKING GROUP ASIDE THAT WE CAN TAKE ACTION.

THANK YOU, EMORY FOR THAT SORT OF SPECIAL COMPENSATION FOR THIS PARTICULAR MEETING.

UM, BUT I WANT TO TRY TO COVER EVERYTHING TONIGHT AND I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERYBODY HAS A CHANCE TO SPEAK UP.

SO I'M GOING TO APOLOGIZE NOW IN ADVANCE FOR IF I SAY, CAN YOU HOLD ON A SECOND BECAUSE WE HAVEN'T HEARD FROM, SO JUST JUST KNOW THAT I'M NOT TRYING TO BE RUDE.

I'M JUST TRYING TO MAKE SURE THAT ALL THE VOICES IN THE ROOM ARE HEARD THIS EVENING.

UM, SO JUST SOME, SOME GUIDELINES FOR THE EVENING.

WE'RE GONNA, THIS CONVERSATION IS WITH CONSULTANTS, MJR PARTNERS, AND I'M GOING TO INTRODUCE YOU TO MARGIE.

AND JUST A SECOND, SHE WILL INTRODUCE FOR TEAM.

UM, THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING HERE AND THANK YOU, ARTS COMMISSION AND STAFF FOR CONTRIBUTING YOUR TIME AND TALENTS TO THE CONVERSATION THIS EVENING.

WE'RE GOING TO BE TALKING ABOUT THE CULTURAL FUNDING REVIEW PROCESS A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE INTERIM REPORT AND THE ROLE OF THE ARTS COMMISSION AND MOVING EVERYTHING FORWARD.

AND, AND IN OUR NEW ENVIRONMENT, UM, MJR WILL BE FACILITATING MUCH OF THAT CONVERSATION SELENA AND I ARE VICE-CHAIR AND I WILL BE IN AND OUT OF THAT TO KEEP US ON TRACK.

UM, AND THEN THERE'LL BE PLENTY OF TIME FOR DISCUSSION AND QUESTIONS AS WE GO THROUGH.

UM,

[1. CHAIR’S REPORT]

SO AT THIS POINT I WOULD LIKE TO INTRODUCE, UM, MARGIE JOHNSON, REESE, WHO IS PRINCIPAL AND CHIEF ENGAGEMENT ENGAGEMENT OFFICER OF MJR PARTNERS.

MARGIE, FIRST THING I NEED TO DO IS GET OFF MUTE.

SO THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

UM, MICHELLE AND, UM, SELENA, MEGAN, JAIME, ALL THE FOLKS THAT HAVE BEEN HELPING US GET READY FOR THIS CONVERSATION, UM, TONIGHT, AND TRYING TO SEND YOU A LITTLE BIT OF, SORT OF THE RULES OF THE GAME AHEAD OF TIME.

I WANT TO START BY INTRODUCING THE FOLKS ON MY TEAM.

SO YOU'LL KNOW WHO'S VOICES AND FACES.

YOU'RE LOOKING AT, UM, ASHLEY, RENEE WATKINS.

UM, I CAN'T SEE HER, BUT I'M JUST LOOKING AT ME.

UM, ASHLEY, UH, IS ON OUR TEAM.

ASHLEY IS A PROFESSIONAL AND TEACHING ARTISTS WHEN SHE WAS DOING THE INTERVIEWS WITH US IN AUSTIN A YEAR AND A HALF OR SO AGO.

SHE, UM, WAS A TEACHING ARTISTS AT LINCOLN CENTER.

UM, AND NOW IT'S MOVED OVER TO JUILLIARD AS A CURRICULUM SPECIALIST.

ASHLEY COMES TO US FROM THE WORLD OF OPERA.

SAM WILLIAMSON IS AN ARTS EDUCATOR ARTIST TRIED TO TRAIN THEM INTO AN ARTS ADMINISTRATOR, BUT HE INSISTS ON BEING A CREATIVE THIS TIME.

HE'S ON OUR TEAM AS A, ALSO A FACILITATOR CO-FACILITATOR AND HELPED US CONDUCT SOME OF THE LARGER GROUP COMMUNITY MEETINGS WHEN WE WERE IN AUSTIN ABOUT A YEAR AND A HALF AGO.

SO THOSE ARE TWO, TWO OF THE, UH, FOUR OR FIVE FOLKS THAT HAVE, HAVE LANDED IN AUSTIN AND BEEN A PART OF THIS PROCESS.

ONGOING, JUST WANT TO SAY A COUPLE OF WORDS, UM, THIS PLATFORM USING ZOOM AND WEBEX, UH, SOMETIMES IT MAKES US A LITTLE ANTSY.

WE DON'T FEEL LIKE WE CAN INTERRUPT OR GET OUR VOICES HEARD, BUT JUST WANT TO SAY JUST TWO OR THREE RULES, UH, FOR, FOR TONIGHT, WE HOPE THAT YOU WILL FULLY ENGAGE.

UM, I DON'T KNOW THE CHAT SITUATION HERE, BUT I THINK MICHELLE CAN ACKNOWLEDGE YOU, RAISE YOUR HAND, ASK US A QUESTION AT ANY POINT, IF YOU FEEL LIKE WE'RE, WE'VE NOT GIVEN YOU A THOROUGH ANSWER, YOU KNOW, JUST MAKE SURE YOU ASK US THAT.

UM, AND ALSO JUST TO BE RESPECTFUL OF THE PROCESSES IS A PUBLIC MEETING.

YOU GUYS DO THIS EVERY MONTH, SO I DON'T HAVE TO SAY ANYTHING ABOUT, UM, THE PUBLIC TO YOU, BUT IT IS HELPFUL FOR US, UM, JUST TO BE ABLE TO RESPOND TO YOU IN REAL TIME.

SO WE DON'T WANT YOU TO GET FRUSTRATED IF WE WERE, IF WE'RE MOVING ON, AS MICHELLE SAYS, WE'VE GOT A LOT TO COVER, BUT LOOKING FORWARD TO IT, FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT ARE NEW ON THE COMMISSION, SINCE WE STARTED THIS PROCESS, JUST WANT TO SAY A WORD ABOUT WHAT OUR, UM, INTENT WAS IN THIS FUNDING REVIEW PROCESS, HOW WE STARTED, YOU KNOW, WHERE WE WERE, WE HAD TO MAKE SOME ADJUSTMENTS MIDSTREAM, UM, BUT JUST WANT TO SAY WHAT, UH, UM, WHAT'S THIS PROCESS FUNDAMENTALLY THE ROLE OF THIS PROCESS WAS, UH, TO BROADEN THE VOICES, TO BROADEN INPUT AND TAKE A LOOK AT HOW THE COMMUNITY AT LARGE WAS ENGAGING

[00:05:01]

IN CULTURAL ACTIVITY.

BUT INTERIM REPORT, AS YOU'VE SEEN BEFORE, UM, STARTED TO IDENTIFY FROM THIS PROCESS, A NUMBER OF COMPONENTS, ONE OF THEM WAS TO TRY TO GIVE PROMINENCE TO VOICES THAT ARE OFTEN, UH, NOT ACKNOWLEDGED OR ACKNOWLEDGED TOO LITTLE.

SO SOME OF OUR OUTREACHING ACTIVITIES WANTING TO INCLUDE MORE THAN JUST CULTURAL ORGANIZATIONS, BUT ALSO RESIDENTS IN THEIR, IN THEIR, THIS IS A STOP SIGN.

I WAS GOING TO ASK A QUICK QUESTION BEFORE WE GET TOO FAR INTO THIS, THIS

[2a. Work session with consultant MJR Partners and the Arts Commission with discussion and possible action]

IS A GOOD TIME MARGIE TO GO AHEAD AND DO THE INTRODUCTIONS FOR THE ARTS COMMISSION, SORT OF AS A LEVEL SET AS WE START INTO THIS CONVERSATION, YOU KNOW, IT'S NOT GOOD TO GIVE ME THE MICROPHONE BECAUSE I START ROLLING.

I SAW YOU DOING THAT.

I THOUGHT I'D PAUSE THERE FOR A SECOND.

THANKS, MICHELLE.

AND I'LL KEEP IT WITH, LET'S DO THE INTROS ON, ON THE COMMISSION SIDE.

MY APOLOGIES.

NO WORRIES AT ALL.

YEAH.

I WANTED, I WANTED MARGIE TO INTRODUCE HER TEAM SINCE THERE WERE FACES HERE THAT YOU GUYS DIDN'T RECOGNIZE.

AND THEN I WANT TO TAKE A LITTLE BIT, NOT A LOT OF TIME, BUT JUST A LITTLE BIT OF TIME FOR US TO INTRODUCE EACH OTHER AS SORT OF A LEVEL SET.

SO WE ALL LEARN A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT WHY WE'RE HERE AND ANY COMMUNITY WATCHING UNDERSTANDS A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT WHY WE'RE HERE.

UM, SO WE SENT OUT EARLIER TODAY AND THANK YOU I'M IN FOR COLLECTING AND DISTRIBUTING THAT INFORMATION, A, UH, JUST AN INTRODUCTION SHEET, AND WE'RE GOING TO INTRODUCE EACH OTHER AND WE'RE GOING TO GO DOWN THE LINE.

SO D ONE IS GOING TO DO D TWO AND WHO'S GOING TO DO D THREE, UM, FULLY BASED, GOING TO BE KIND ENOUGH TO INTRODUCE RICK, CAUSE BRETT'S NOT HERE.

UM, AND I'M GOING TO START WITH KIMBERLY KEATON, BUT WHO IS ALSO NOT HERE.

SO I'M ACTUALLY GOING TO PAUSE THERE AND SAY, CAN WE START? I MET WITH YOU AND I WILL PICK UP KIMBERLY WHEN SHE GETS HERE.

SO YOU'RE NOT INTRODUCING ME.

I'M INTRODUCING THEM.

WELL, I W I WAS GOING TO LET KIMBERLY INTRODUCE YOU, BUT I CAN INTRODUCE YOU HOWEVER YOU WANT.

OKAY, I'M GOING TO LET ME GO AHEAD AND DO THAT.

THIS IS JAIME SALVADOR, CASTEEL LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.

HE IS THE COMMISSIONER FROM DISTRICT TWO.

HE'S BEEN ON THE ARTS COMMISSION FOR SIX YEARS AND HE CAME ON BECAUSE, UM, AT THE CONCLUSION OF HIS SIX YEARS ON THE AIPP PANEL, UM, WHERE HE SERVED WITH MUCH HIGH REGARD, HE WAS CALLED TO SPEAK AS THE CHAIR OF LOPP AND DEFENSE OF THE AIP PROGRAM TO THE NEWLY ELECTED TEN ONE CITY COUNCIL.

AFTER THAT EXPERIENCE, HE DECIDED HE SHOULD CONTINUE HIS PUBLIC SERVICE FOR WHICH WE ARE ALL VERY GRATEFUL TO HELP ENSURE THE ARTS COMMUNITY IS HEARD REGARDING CITY ISSUES.

HE ASSUMED THAT MOST ARTISTS LIVED IN EAST AUSTIN, DICKS DISTRICTS ONE AND THREE, AND WOULD HAVE A RELATIVELY HIGH CHANCE OF GETTING NOMINATED FOR DISTRICT TWO.

AND, UM, AND HE'S OUR IMMEDIATE PAST CHAIR AND AN ALL AROUND STAND UP GUY.

THANK YOU, CHAIR POLAR.

UH, I AM INTRODUCING COMMISSIONER ARTS, COMMISSIONER PHILIPPE OUTSELL FROM DISTRICT THREE.

UH, HE'S BEEN ON THE COMMISSION FOR, UH, I GUESS FIVE AND A HALF YEARS NOW.

AND COMMISSIONER GARZA WAS ASKED TO SERVE, UH, BY COUNCIL MEMBER AND THE DA, UH, HAVING HAD VARIOUS PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE WITH CITY ARTS FUNDING ALWAYS FELT THAT IT HAS SHORT CHANGED OUR COMMUNITIES OF COLOR AND NOT VALUED THE CONTRIBUTION OF ARTISTS FROM THESE COMMUNITIES.

UM, SEEING THAT THERE'S A SYSTEMIC EXPECTATION REGARDING ECONOMIC CONTRIBUTION OF AN EVENT, THE ECONOMIC CONTRIBUTION OF TOURISTS WHO CONTRIBUTE TO THE HOT FUNDS, UH, OR IN OTHER WORDS, THE COMMUNITY ART EVENTS ARE JUDGED EQUALLY AND THUS NOT EQUITABLY.

THANK YOU.

THAT'S YOUR PAYMENT.

AND I'M GOING TO BE INTRODUCING YOU NEVER TRIPS OVER OTTOMANS, BUT RICK WAS APPOINTED A LITTLE OVER A YEAR SINCE MAY, 2020 IS A COMMISSIONER COUNCIL MEMBER IS PAYING ATTENTION.

UH, BUT I'VE HEARD RICK SAY ONE OF THE REASONS HE WANTS GOING OR JOIN THE ARTS COMMISSION WAS TO MAKE SOME, A LITTLE BIT OF CHANGES IN SOME OF ITS PROPERTIES, BUT HE'S GOING TO SPEAK VERY LITTLE IN THIS THING.

SO, UH, MAYBE ADD A LITTLE BIT MORE.

THANK YOU, RICK.

YEP.

AND SO YOU'RE GOING TO INTRODUCE ACA.

OKAY.

UM, SO ACA GRAY, UH, FROM DISTRICT SIX, SHE'S BEEN WITH US FOR TWO MONTHS.

UM, I THINK WHAT LURKING THE FIRST MONTH AND NOW, WELL, I GUESS LURKING THE SECOND TIME TOO.

UM, SO THE REASON SHE JOINED WAS TO HELP FIND AND DEFINE

[00:10:01]

AND REFLECT ARTISTIC ECOSYSTEM AND ITS IMPORTANCE FOR THE CITY OF AUSTIN TO HELP THE CITY DEVELOP AND SUPPORT A COLLABORATIVE ARTS INFRASTRUCTURE WITHIN AN OVERALL WELL THOUGHT OUT VISION OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN ITSELF TO WORK TOWARDS A HEALTHY, SUPPORTIVE COLLABORATIVE AND ECONOMICALLY AND FINANCIALLY SUSTAINED ART COMMUNITY HAND IN HAND WITH THE CITY OF AUSTIN, GOVERNMENTAL STRUCTURE LED AN EDUCATED BY THE ARTS COMMUNITY ITSELF, AND I'VE ALREADY WORKED WITH HER ON THE, UH, ARTS NEIGHBORHOOD GROUP.

AND SHE'S FABULOUS.

SO WELL, THANK YOU.

THANK YOU SO MUCH, RICK.

AND I, AGAIN, APOLOGIZE, TALL COMMISSIONERS AND, UH, THE MJR TEAM FOR NOT SEEING MY FACE.

I APOLOGIZE FOR THAT NEXT TIME.

UM, IT IS MY, UH, PLEASURE AND PRIVILEGE TO, UM, RECOGNIZE HEIDI SMALL BUCK FROM DISTRICT SEVEN.

SHE'S BEEN WITH THE COMMISSION FOR THREE MONTHS.

SHE STATES BECAUSE ARTS AND CULTURE ARE ESSENTIAL TO EQUITABLE, JOYFUL, RESILIENT PLACES.

I WANT TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE CREATION OF POLICIES, PROGRAMS, PRACTICES THAT SUPPORT OUR ARTISTS AND CULTURAL PRODUCERS ABILITY TO CREATE AND TO THRIVE HERE.

WELCOME HEIDI.

THANK YOU, HEIDI.

BEFORE YOU GET GOING, UM, CITY HALL, CAN WE, UM, UPDATE? YOU JUST DID KIMBERLY KEATON.

THANK YOU.

KEEP GOING, HEIDI.

THANK YOU.

SORRY FOR THE INTERRUPTION.

NO PROBLEM.

I AM INTRODUCING COMMISSIONER SELENA ZISMAN TALENA IS THAT RIGHT? THIS, THIS, THIS MAN, EVERYONE.

MISPRONOUNCES MY NAME.

I UNDERSTAND.

UM, EXCEPT ACO DID NOT.

UM, SALINAS IS DISTRICT EIGHT.

SHE HAS BEEN ON THE COMMISSION FOR ALMOST TWO YEARS, BEGINNING IN APRIL, 2019, AND SHE SAYS HAVING WORKED BOOTS ON THE GROUND WITH CREATIVES, I SAW JOINING THE COMMISSION AS A UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY TO BETTER UNDERSTAND HOW THE CITY SUPPORTS THE ARTISTS COMMUNITY.

I WANT TO LEVERAGE THIS KNOWLEDGE TO BETTER CONNECT AUSTIN MAKERS AND ARTISTS WITH CITY SUPPORT AND FUNDING.

THANK YOU, HEIDI.

I WILL BE INTRODUCING LOUISE FLOTIS WHO REPRESENTS DISTRICT NINE.

SHE HAS BEEN ON THE COMMISSION SINCE 2012 AND SHE JOINED BECAUSE OF HER LOVE AND INTEREST AND PREVIOUS WORK IN THE ARTS AND PUBLIC POLICY AND WITH THE DESIRE TO PROMOTE AND STRENGTHEN THE ARTS AND CULTURES, ESPECIALLY THAT OF OUR MINORITY COMMUNITIES OR UNDERREPRESENTED COMMUNITIES.

I WAS RECRUITED TO REPLACE THE LONE HISPANIC WOMEN SERVING ON THE COMMISSION WHO WAS RETIRING AFTER MANY YEARS AND WANTED TO CONTINUE TO REPRESENT AND AMPLIFY THE VOICES OF MY COMMUNITY AND TO ENSURE THAT ALL VOICES IN THE COMMUNITY.

AND THAT'S A QUOTE FROM MICHELLE.

SORRY ABOUT THAT.

THANK YOU, SELENA.

UH, AND I GOT IT.

I'M SORRY.

I NEED TO FIND MY SPREADSHEET, BUT I'M INTRODUCING SOMEBODY I'VE KNOWN FOR A REALLY LONG TIME PREDATING THE ARTS COMMISSION, AND THAT IS, UH, AMY MOCK FROM DISTRICT 10.

UH, WE GO WAY BACK ON WOMEN'S ADVOCACY ORGANIZATIONS AND CAUSES, UH, AND SHE'S BEEN DOING A LOT OF GREAT WORK FOR THE CITY.

AWESOME.

BUT SPECIFICALLY SHE'S BEEN ON THE COMMISSION.

WELL, FOR, I THINK IT'S OVER FIVE YEARS BECAUSE I DON'T KNOW IF YOU'RE JUST COUNTING FROM TEN ONE ON, BUT UH, DEFINITELY BEEN ON A LONG TIME AND SHE JOINED TO WORK TOWARDS THE VISION AND MISSION OF THE COMMISSION AND TO PROMOTE THE, THE, THE, THIS VISION AND MISSION IN, IN OUR COMMUNITY, ESPECIALLY IN THE ASIAN AND ASIAN AMERICAN COMMUNITIES, UH, SHE WANTS TO IMPROVE AND ADVANCE, UM, THE ARTS COMMISSION IN THE AREAS OF INCLUSION AND EQUITY.

AND SHE'S DOING AN AWESOME JOB MUTED, AMY, AMY YOU'RE ON MUTE.

OOPS.

OOPS.

OOPS.

OKAY.

AM I, AM I OKAY NOW? CAN YOU GOT YA? OKAY.

THANK YOU.

WELL, I HAVE THE PLEASURE TO INTRODUCE OUR CHAIR.

GOD.

SHE IS THE MAYOR'S APPOINTEE.

SO SHE IS AT LOTS POSITION AND SHE JOINED, UM, THE COMMISSION, UH, SIX YEARS AGO AND SHE JOINED OUT OF

[00:15:01]

A DESIRE TO COMMIT HER TIME AND TALENT IN SUPPORT OF OUR VIBRANT CREATIVE COMMUNITY.

SHE WANTED TO IMPROVE THE SUSTAIN, SUSTAIN THE ABILITY OF THE CREATIVE ECOSYSTEM AND TO HAVE HELP WEAVE ART, MUSIC, AND CULTURE EVEN MORE DEEPLY INTO THE FABRIC OF AUSTIN.

VERY BIG VISION.

THANK YOU, MICHELLE.

THANKS, AMY.

AND I HAVE THE GREAT HONOR TO INTRODUCE TO YOU, YOU TOO.

UM, COMMISSIONER KIMBERLEY KEATON, WHO IS OUR D ONE REPRESENTATIVE.

SHE HAS NOW BEEN WITH US FOR A YEAR AND A HALF, AND SHE JOINED BECAUSE SHE WAS ASKED INITIALLY, AND SHE WAS IN A POSITION OF HIS CALIBER IN ANOTHER STATE CAPITOL AND UNDERSTOOD THE IMPORTANCE OF REPRESENTING HER, THE PEOPLE AND THE ARTS AND CREATIVITY.

AND SHE WANTS TO SERVE THE COMMUNITY AND LEADERSHIP AND AS A COMMUNITY ADVOCATE, THANKS KIMBERLY.

AND THAT ROUNDS OUT OUR INTRODUCTIONS.

THANK YOU GUYS FOR THAT.

UM, SO THE SURVEYS THAT WE COMPLETED, MANY OF US DID THIS FOR THE RETREAT OF FEW OF US, UM, EITHER UPDATED OR, OR SUBMITTED FOR THE FIRST TIME.

THANK YOU.

WE WILL PROVIDE THOSE TO EVERYONE AFTER THE MEETING.

SO YOU HAVE THE FULL RANGE OF ANSWERS, BUT JUST WANT TO JUST SORT OF GIVE US A FRAMEWORK FOR WHY YOU WERE HERE AS WE WALK INTO A CONVERSATION THIS EVENING.

AND WITH THAT MARGIE, I'M TURNING THIS BACK OVER TO YOU.

THANKS AGAIN.

UM, WE SHOULD ACKNOWLEDGE, UH, MEGAN WELLS AND I'M TRYING TO SEE IF THERE ARE OTHER CITY STAFF, UM, HE SEES HIM YEAH.

IS, HAS JOINED US AS WELL.

UM, THANK YOU, UH, AGAIN, AND, YOU KNOW, I REALLY APPRECIATE IT GETTING A LITTLE BIT MORE INSIGHT INTO WE DON'T WHEN WE COME TO PRESENT TO YOU WHERE WE'RE BUSINESS AS USUAL.

SO IT'S GOOD TO KNOW YOU AND GOOD TO MEET THE NEW COMMISSIONERS AS WELL.

UM, SO JUST TO, UM, GET US GOING, SAM, UH, IS GOING TO HAVE A CONTROL OVER SOME VISUALS.

THAT'LL TRY TO HELP ME STAY ON TRACK.

I AM.

UM, OBVIOUSLY I HAVE SO MUCH TO SAY, I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT I DON'T OVERSTEP MY TIME.

UM, BUT JUST, JUST TO RECAP THAT WE WERE ENGAGED TO FUNDAMENTALLY BEGIN TO LOOK AT THE, UH, FUNDING PRACTICES AND PROCESSES OF THE DIVISION TO, TO, UH, ENGAGE THE COMMUNITY AS BROADLY AS POSSIBLE AND HELPING TO REDESIGN WHERE NECESSARY TO EMPHASIZE THOSE PROGRAMS THAT WERE WORKING, UM, AND TO BRING ANOTHER PERSPECTIVE TO COMMUNITY VOICES.

UM, SO OUR STARTING POINT IN THIS PROCESS, YES, IT'S ME THIS TIME.

UM, VERY BRIEFLY.

CAN WE TOUCH ON THE MEETING AGREEMENTS? WELL, I THOUGHT I HAD, BUT, UM, DID THEY RECEIVE THEM IN THE MAIL? I JUST, YES.

SO I'M JUST WANTING TO CALL YOUR ATTENTION TO THOSE AGAIN, THEN, UM, TO EMPHASIZE I'M NOT GOING TO REREAD THEM FOR YOU, BUT TO EMPHASIZE OUR WILLINGNESS AND HOPE THAT YOU WILL FULLY ENGAGE IN THE PROCESS.

UM, AND TO CONSIDER THAT THIS IS A DIALOGUE, A RESPECTFUL PLACE FOR, UM, FOR SHARING OUR COMMENTS AND LET'S AGREE TO DISAGREE.

UM, BUT THERE ARE THOSE, THOSE AGREEMENTS WERE SENT TO YOU.

UM, JUST SO THAT IT CAN SORT OF, UM, REMIND US, UH, THAT WE WANT TO PUT OUR WORK OUT THERE SO THAT THE PUBLIC CAN, CAN BENEFIT FROM IT FROM THERE.

YEAH.

THANKS MARGIE.

THANK YOU.

UM, THE STARTING POINT FOR OUR WORK, UH, WITH THE CITY AS MOST OF, YOU KNOW, WAS TO FOCUS ON, UM, LOOKING AT THE CITY'S, UM, CULTURAL ARTS AWARDS THROUGH A RACIAL EQUITY LENS.

THIS IS THE DEFINITION YOU'VE SEEN IT BEFORE.

UM, WE HAD A GOOD STRONG CONVERSATION ALMOST DAY ONE WITH THE CITY'S EQUITY OFFICE TO GET US AS A, UH, AN EXTERNAL TEAM CENTERED ON WHAT THE CITY BELIEVES, UH, RACIAL EQUITY IS AND WHAT THAT JOURNEY LOOKS LIKE.

AND WHEN WE ACHIEVE THAT, UM, WE, WE BELIEVE THAT WE WILL ACHIEVE, UH, ELIMINATING ALL THE BARRIERS THAT PREDICT NEGATIVELY PREDICT SOMEONE'S QUALITY OF LIFE IN THE CITY.

NOW, THIS IS A HUGE CONVERSATION.

IT'S A NATIONAL CONVERSATION IN MANY WAYS.

IT'S A GLOBAL CONVERSATION TOO, ABOUT ACKNOWLEDGING WHAT EQUITY IS, WHAT IT MEANS TO DIFFERENT PEOPLE IN DIFFERENT PHASES OF THEIR LIVES.

PEOPLE FROM DIFFERENT COMMUNITIES HAVE DIFFERENT UNDERSTANDINGS OF EQUITY.

SO WE NEEDED TO HEAR ALL OF THOSE VOICES AND THEN TO ADD AND CENTRAL THIS ON RACIAL EQUITY, UM, HAS ALSO

[00:20:01]

BEEN A REALLY, UM, UH, IMPORTANT FILTER FOR THIS, FOR THESE CONVERSATIONS.

NEXT SLIDE, SAM.

UM, AS WE GOT INTO THIS, UM, PROCESS, WE WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE, AS A TEAM UNDERSTOOD AND COULD TAKE OUT INTO THE COMMUNITY, YOUR VALUES AS A CITY, YOUR VALUES AS AN ARTS COMMISSION.

SO WE DID REVIEW, UM, A LOT OF THE WORKING GROUPS WORK THAT YOU GUYS PROVIDED FOR US THAT HAD PRECEDED OUR COMING TO TOWN.

UM, WE LOOKED AT THE MISSION, HOW THE CITY, UH, ENVISIONS ARTS AND CULTURE, AND JUST PULLED OUT A COUPLE OF BULLETS HERE IN THIS SLIDE, BUT A IT'S A ROBUST AND VERY INFORMATIVE DOCUMENT.

AND WE ALSO WANT TO CAPITALIZE ON WHAT WE WERE LEARNING ABOUT YOUR INTEREST AS A COMMISSION, THE FOUR PILLARS THAT YOU WERE INTERESTED IN, UH, LEADERSHIP, UM, ENSURING AN ENCOURAGING EQUITY, FOSTERING COLLABORATION.

WE'VE ALREADY HEARD THAT TONIGHT.

I MAKE NOTE FROM A BRAND NEW COMMISSIONER WHO WASN'T A PART OF THAT, BUT I THINK THAT JUST SAYS THAT YOU'RE ALL WORKING IN SYNC HERE AND THEN INSPIRING EVOLUTION, INSPIRING CHANGE AND INSPIRING INNOVATION ON INSPIRING GROWTH.

SO, SO WITH THAT BACKGROUND, UM, WE WERE ALSO ABLE TO SHARE THAT POSITION WHEN WE TALKED TO GROUPS, SOMETIMES WE, UM, NEEDED TO REMIND, UM, SOME OF YOUR CONSTITUENTS ABOUT THE MISSION AND THE VISION, BUT IN ALL CASES, I THINK THAT IS A CENTERPIECE, UH, FOR THE WORK THAT WE WERE STARTING TO IMPLEMENT.

AGAIN, UM, A LOT OF THIS WILL BE REPEAT FROM, UM, THE INTERIM REPORT THAT YOU'VE SEEN AND TO UNDERSTAND THAT THE INTERIM REPORT IS REALLY A STARTING PLACE FOR US TO BROADEN THE SCOPE OF THE DISCUSSION, UM, SO THAT WE COULD CAST A WIDER NET, UH, AROUND THE IDEA OF WHAT CULTURAL EQUITY, WHAT RACIAL EQUITY MIGHT LOOK LIKE, WHAT EMERGED, UH, FROM, UH, THE VARIOUS PHASES THAT WE SET OUT TO, TO, UH, TO IMPLEMENT WHAT EMERGED IS THAT WE BELIEVE, UM, THAT AUSTINITES FEEL THAT THERE IS AN IMPERATIVE TO, TO STRENGTHEN THE ARTS IN AUSTIN, BUT ALSO TO BUILD UPON WHAT EXISTS RIGHT NOW.

SO DIDN'T GET US TO THAT IMPERATIVE.

WE STARTED LISTENING EARLY ON IN THE PROCESS AND WE LISTENED A LOT.

UM, AND WE HEARD COMMENTS LIKE, WE'RE FRUSTRATED.

WHY ARE YOU GUYS ASKING US THE SAME QUESTIONS? WE'VE HEARD THIS BEFORE.

WE'VE SHARED OUR INPUT BEFORE, BUT SOMETIMES IT'S HELPFUL TO HAVE AN OUTSIDE, UH, EAR SET OF YEARS TO LISTEN FOR DIFFERENT THINGS.

AND SO THROUGH, UH, THROUGH THESE TOWN HALL MEETINGS, THROUGH WORKSHOPS THAT WE HAVE CONDUCTED EVERYTHING FROM NORMALIZE AND EQUITY INTO THE CITY SYSTEMS, UM, TO, UH, VERY SPECIFIC CULTURAL EQUITY WORKSHOPS TALKING ABOUT, UM, RESHAPING, THE MISSION AND VISION FOR THE CITY'S ARTS AND CULTURAL RESOURCES.

YOU'LL SEE SOME OF THE DATA THROUGHOUT THE REPORT, BUT SHOWS YOU HOW MANY PEOPLE WE TALKED TO.

UM, AND, AND I THINK IN A PROCESS LIKE THIS IN A CITY, AS LARGE AS AUSTIN, AS YOU CAN'T DO ENOUGH LISTENING, UM, WORKSHOPS, LISTENING SESSIONS, CERTAINLY WORKSHOPS WITH THE STAFF AND THE PROFESSIONAL ARTS ADMINISTRATORS THAT YOU GUYS WORK WITH.

UM, LISTENING IN ON ARTS COMMISSION MEETINGS AND PARTICIPATING IN THOSE SESSIONS, I'M TALKING TO VERY SPECIFIC STAKEHOLDER STAKEHOLDER GROUPS, SOME WHO WERE ARTS ADVOCATES IN SOME WHO WERE, UM, GOVERNMENT AND ELECTED OFFICIALS.

SO JUST A FULL RANGE OF PEOPLE, ALL OF THOSE, UH, CONVERSATIONS, UM, PULLED OUT SOME REALLY IMPORTANT THEMES THAT WE WERE ABLE TO GATHER.

AND WE'LL TALK ABOUT THOSE IN A SECOND.

UM, WHAT DO WE DO WITH ALL THIS LISTENING? WHAT DO WE DO WITH THIS DATA? TWO VIEWS FROM THE SESSIONS WITH INDIVIDUAL LEADERS OF YOUR LARGER CULTURAL ORGANIZATIONS TO, UM, INDIVIDUAL ARTISTS, UM, AS CULTURAL PLANNERS THERE, THERE'S NEVER TOO MANY TOO MUCH, UM, DATA, BUT WHAT WE HAVE DONE WITH ALL OF THAT INFORMATION, WE TRANSCRIBE ALL THE VIDEOS.

UM, THANK GOODNESS NOW FOR A REALLY HANDY TOOL THAT DOES TRANSCRIPTION FOR YOU, UM, AUTOMATICALLY, UM, WE TRANSCRIBED THE VIDEO AND AUDIO RECORDINGS OF ALL THOSE SESSIONS AND, AND THE, THROUGH THE SURVEYS THAT WE CONDUCTED AS WELL.

WE BEGAN TO SORT OF CATEGORIZE BIG PICTURE THEMES THAT WE

[00:25:01]

KEPT HEARING CONSISTENTLY, AND THEN PUTTING THOSE THEMES IN SORT OF A TIME-BASED CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER.

SO WE COULD MAKE SURE THAT WHAT WAS SAID EARLY IN THE PROCESS, ALSO CONNECTED TO THEMES THAT WE HEARD LATER IN THE PROCESS, SO THAT WE DIDN'T LOSE TRACK AND JUST RESPONDED TO THE LAST THING SOMEBODY SAID TO US.

UM, AND THEN WE WERE MAKING SURE THAT WE WERE KEEPING TRACK OF WHOSE VOICES WERE BEING REPRESENTED.

SO OUR OWN SORT OF SYSTEM OF CODING, THE ROLES OF THE OTHER PARTICIPANTS, WHETHER THEY WERE ARTISTS, WHETHER THEY WERE, UM, BOARD MEMBERS OF ORGANIZATIONS, WHETHER THEY WERE EXECUTIVE STAFFS OR DEAF, UM, OR VOLUNTEERS WITH ORGANIZATIONS.

SO WE WOULD HAVE A SENSE OF WHERE THESE IMPULSES AND IDEAS WERE COMING FROM, DID THE WRITTEN STATEMENTS THAT CAME INTO US.

WE ALSO DIGITIZED THOSE TO KEEP TRACK AGAIN, OF WHERE THE INFORMATION WAS COMING FROM AND ALL OF THAT HELPS US TO, UM, TO INTERPRET WHAT WE CALL SECONDARY DOCUMENTATION.

SO YOUR GRANT REVIEW GUIDELINES, UM, YOUR, YOUR, THE PROGRAM EMPHASIS OTHER STUDIES THAT THE CITY HAS DONE IN THE PAST, UM, ET CETERA.

AND THEN TO MAKE SURE THAT WE UNDERSTOOD THE LOCAL DEMOGRAPHICS AND THE LOCAL POLICIES AND IN THIS CASE, BUT THE BIG PICTURE POLICY THAT WAS COMING AT US WAS, UM, THE CITY'S INTENTIONAL, UM, LOOK AT ALL OF ITS PROGRAMS, FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES, AND SERVICES TO THE PUBLIC, THROUGH A RACIAL EQUITY LENS.

THAT'S A LONG WAY OF SAYING TO YOU TO YOU THAT, UM, THERE WAS SIX OF US IN AUSTIN AT VARIOUS TIMES, UM, LISTENING AND LEARNING AND ASKING A LOT OF QUESTIONS.

I NEVER GOT THE FEELING THAT PEOPLE WERE SHY ABOUT SHARING THEIR THOUGHTS ABOUT QUESTIONS.

UM, BUT SOMETIMES IT APPEARS, IT APPEARS THAT WE'RE OUTSIDERS.

THE GOOD NEWS IS THAT WE'RE ALL ARTS PRACTITIONERS AND WE HAVE SEEN IT IN THE CITIES THAT WE WORK SOME SIMILAR KINDS OF THINGS AND CONCERNS, BUT AT ALL TIMES WE CONSIDERED AUSTIN'S APPROACH, UM, TO BE UNIQUE.

AND SO OUR RESPONSES ARE AS WELL.

OKAY.

UM, WE ALSO CONDUCTED, UM, WITH, UH, THE CITY STAFF, SOMETHING THAT WE REFER TO AS A CULTURAL EQUITY AUDIT.

UM, AND THAT IS, UH, NOT WHAT YOU THINK IN TERMS OF A FINANCIAL REVIEW OF YOUR SYSTEMS, BUT IT IS A REVIEW IN CULTURAL AGENCIES AND LOCAL ARTS AGENCIES OF HOW THESE STAFF RESPONSE TO, UM, PRACTICE THEIR PRACTICES.

AND SO WE, WE SURVEY THE STAFF AND HAD SEVERAL DISCUSSIONS, AND I'LL JUST QUICKLY TELL YOU WHAT A CULTURAL EQUITY AUDIT INCLUDES.

UM, JUST TO, JUST TO GIVE YOU A BRIEF OVERVIEW, AND WE'VE CONDUCTED THIS IN SEVERAL CITIES LIKE SIZE TO AUSTIN.

WE LOOK AT, UM, THE ENVIRONMENT THAT THE STAFF WORKS IN, WHETHER THEY ARE LOCKED TO THEIR DESKS, WHETHER THEY DO ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES WITH THE COMMUNITY.

WE REALLY TRY TO TRACK THAT FROM A DATA PERSPECTIVE.

WE DO LOOK AT PROCESSES AND I TELL YOU A CLEAR EXAMPLE FROM THE ONNIT, UM, THAT HAS COME BACK TO BE A, UH, UM, A POINT OF WORKING JOY FOR ALL OF US.

AS A TEAM WAS ASKING THE STAFF TO ACTUALLY CREATE A BREATH OF THE STEPS, START TO FINISH FROM THE FIRST OFFICE HOURS CONVERSATION TO THE APPLICATION PROCESS, TO THE REVIEW PANEL REVIEW PROCESS, TO THE CONTRACTING PROCESS AND ALL THE STEPS IN BETWEEN ONCE THE ORGANIZATION OF THE RECIPIENT HAS RECEIVED AN AWARD.

SO THEY'RE ACTUALLY GETTING A CHECK IN THEIR MAILBOX, THE NUMBER OF STEPS WE JUST, JUST TO, TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA, THE NUMBER OF STEPS INVOLVED IN THAT SOMETIMES WOULD LEAD TO THE, THE RECIPIENT, ACTUALLY NOT GETTING THE FUNDING IN THEIR HANDS UNTIL THEIR PROJECT HAD BEEN, HAD BEGUN, YOU KNOW, THREE TO SIX MONTHS IN AND IN ONE OR TWO RARE CASES.

UM, SOMETIMES THE NEXT YEAR'S APPLICATION WAS DUE AND THE RECIPIENT STILL HAD NOT RECEIVED THE PRIOR YEAR FUNDING.

THAT'S NOT A CRITICISM, IT'S JUST A REVIEW.

AND SO WHAT THAT REVIEW ALLOWED US TO DO WAS TO WORK IN REAL WITH THE STAFF, AS YOU'VE ALREADY SEEN TO LOOK AT, UH, WHAT WERE THE POLICIES THAT THEY WERE REQUIRED TO IMPLEMENT VERSUS A PRACTICE, AND SOMETIMES IN THE GRANT MAKING SYSTEM, UM, WE JUST KEEP ADDING PROCESSES AND ADDING PROCESSES TO ACCOMMODATE.

AND WHAT WE ENDED UP WITH IS JUST A HUGE LIST

[00:30:01]

OF BARRIERS.

THAT'S AN EQUITY ISSUE, IT'S AN ACCESS ISSUE AS WELL.

AND SO WE WERE NOT JUST LOOKING AT, IS THIS A BARRIER FOR ORGANIZATIONS OF COLOR, BUT IS IT A BARRIER FOR OUR PARTNERS IN GENERAL, IF, FOR HOW CAN WE WORK TO, TO BETTER THE FIELD FOR EVERYONE? UM, ANOTHER COUPLE OF THINGS ABOUT THE AUDIT WE TOOK A LOOK AT, UM, WAS HOW, UH, ORGANIZATIONS AND, AND NEW APPLICANTS WERE PREPARED FOR COMPETING AND FOR APPLYING FOR GRANTS.

SO IS A LANGUAGE THAT WE USE, UM, APPROACHABLE.

IS THERE A CONTEMPORARY APPROACH AND BY CONTEMPORARY, I MEAN, UM, HOW MUCH DO WE USE TECHNOLOGY IN BOTH THE GRANT MAKING PROCESS, AS WELL AS THE GRANT SEEKING PROCESS FOR THE APPLICANTS, UM, IS EQUITY A CORE BELIEF OF A STAFF? IS THERE A PUBLISHED STATEMENT IN THE OFFICE THAT THE STAFF REFERS TO WHEN THEY'RE MAKING DECISIONS ABOUT RECRUITING PANELISTS, ET CETERA? UM, HOW DO WE THINK ABOUT LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT TO GROW THE CULTURAL SECTOR? SO A NUMBER OF QUESTIONS, EIGHT BIG PICTURE QUESTIONS THAT WE WORKED WITH THE STAFF TO, UM, CONDUCT THIS AUDIT.

AND SO IT'S NOT A PUBLIC PROCESS, BUT IT'S AN, UH, LOOKING INWARD KIND OF PROCESS.

UH, BUT IT'S VERY IMPORTANT FOR US AS WE THINK ABOUT GROWTH.

SO WE LOOKED AT, AS WE SAID, PROGRAM GUIDELINES, WE LOOKED AT YOUR FUNDING HISTORY.

UM, WE LOOKED AT, UH, THE BACKGROUND, UH, SOME BACKGROUND READING THAT WAS IN THE MEDIA.

YOU KNOW, WHAT IS THE PUBLIC SAYING ABOUT THIS PROCESS, ABOUT THE ARTS AND AUSTIN ABOUT ARTISTS OF COLOR, ET CETERA.

SO A LOT OF DATA AND A LOT OF KNOWLEDGE GATHERING, UH, THROUGH THAT PROCESS.

AND THEN WE CAN CONTINUED WHILE WE WERE DOING, UM, THAT WORK.

UM, WE WERE CONTINUING TO HOLD, UM, ONLINE, BY THIS TIME WE WERE DOING ONLINE, UH, TOWN HALL MEETINGS AND PRESENTATIONS, AS WE TOOK THIS INPUT AND SORT OF CREATED IT DOWN TO SOME BIG PICTURE THEMES.

UM, THE FIRST TIME WE WENT BACK OUT TO THE PUBLIC IN DECEMBER, UM, 2020, UM, WE WENT BACK OUT TO THE PUBLIC AND SAID, HERE ARE THE TOP THREE THINGS THAT WE'VE BEEN HEARING.

UM, WE'VE BEEN HEARING AND, AND, AND THEN FORMULATING SOME BEGINNING TO FORMULATE SOME RECOMMENDATIONS AROUND THOSE.

AND ONE WAS TO CONTINUE TO INVEST IN THE CULTURAL SECTOR IN THE CREATIVE SECTOR, BUT TO ALSO THINK ABOUT HOW DO WE NURTURE AND ADVANCE UNDERREPRESENTED VOICES, UH, IN AUSTIN'S RACIALLY AND CULTURALLY DIVERSE COMMUNITIES BY THIS TIME COMMISSION MEMBERS WHO WERE ALSO BEING ASKED TO WORK WITH THE CULTURAL HERITAGE COMMISSION, AM I SAYING THAT RIGHT? CULTURAL HERITAGE DIVISION AND THE MUSIC DIVISION.

AND SO THE GOOD NEWS THERE IS WE WERE GIVEN SOME GUIDANCE, UM, BY THE DEPARTMENT DIRECTOR TO TRY TO CREATE CONNECTIONS BETWEEN ALL THE HOT FUNDED PROGRAMS TO FIND SOME COMMON GROUND THAT WE MIGHT BE ABLE TO WORK TOGETHER.

SO THIS IDEA OF INVESTING IN THE SECTOR ALSO INCLUDED INVESTING IN HERITAGE PRESERVATION, INVESTING IN MUSICIANS AS ENTREPRENEURS.

THE SECOND RECOMMENDATION FROM THE THEMES THAT WE WERE HEARING, UM, CAME TO, TO TALK ABOUT LOOKING AT BUILDING ON US, BUILDING AUSTIN'S EXISTING CULTURAL INFRASTRUCTURE, VALUING THE ORGANIZATIONS THAT HAVE BEEN IN PLACE THAT HAVE BEEN SEEKING AND PRODUCING PROGRAMS IN AUSTIN FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS, FOR LARGER INSTITUTIONS, TO SOME OF THE SMALLER ORGANIZATIONS THAT HAVE BEEN AROUND FOR A LONG TIME BUILDING THAT FOUNDATION.

WE WANTED TO CONTINUE TO INVEST IN THOSE AND BUILDING UPON THAT FINDING WAYS TO EXPAND OPPORTUNITIES FOR NEW ARTISTS, NEW ORGANIZATIONS, TO REACH NEW NEIGHBORHOODS.

WHEN WE STARTED THIS PROCESS, WE STARTED, UM, TRYING TO LOOK AHEAD AT PERHAPS THE DAY WHEN THERE WOULD BE MORE APPLICANTS FOR FEWER DOLLARS, AND THEN THE TRAIN WRECK CAME CALLED THE PANDEMIC.

AND SO THE REALITY OF FEWER DOLLARS MORE APPLICATIONS BECAME THE, THE, THE, THE WALKING SUBJECT MATTER.

UM, SO BUILDING ON THE EXISTING INFRASTRUCTURE DOESN'T MEAN THROWING OUT THE BABY WITH THE BATH WATER.

IT MEANS CAPITALIZING.

IT MEANS THAT BIG C WORD THAT YOU'VE HEARD AND TALKED ABOUT ALREADY, HOW DO WE FIND COLLABORATIVE OPPORTUNITIES? HOW DO WE FIND OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE CITY TO DO CAPACITY BUILDING? SO THE WORD CHANGING THE WAY WE THINK ABOUT OUR CAPACITIES

[00:35:01]

TO SERVICE A BROADER, DEEPER COMMUNITY, NOT JUST WITH MONEY, BUT ALSO TO HELP THINK ABOUT WHAT ARE THE RESOURCES THAT ORGANIZATIONS NEED TO CREATE SOME OF THE CHANGES THAT WERE WE WERE SEEING.

SO, SO BUILDING, AND THEN THE FINAL LEG OF THAT STOOL WAS THINKING ABOUT OPERATIONALIZED OR POLICY BASED PLAN TO REDISTRIBUTE THE CITY'S FINANCIAL RESOURCES, THE WORD DISTRIBUTION REDISTRIBUTION, HOW DO WE SERVE AND REACH OUT TO THOSE UNDERREPRESENTED ARTISTS THAT HAVE EITHER APPLIED, UM, HAVE, ARE NOT FAMILIAR WITH THE MEETINGS AND THE TOWN HALL MEETINGS THAT WE WERE CONDUCTING.

UM, THEY'VE NEVER ACCESSED THE CITY'S FUNDING BEFORE, BUT THERE WAS, THEY WERE PROVIDING CREATIVE OUT THERE PROVIDING CREATIVE PROGRAMS IN THE CITY AND NEIGHBORHOODS, YOU KNOW, ET CETERA.

AND ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE LEARNED CLEARLY THAT YOU WILL HEAR LATER IN, IN THE WEEKS TO COME, WE, WE HEARD ABOUT THE DISPLACEMENT PROCESS, HOW ARTISTS WERE BEING DISPLACED, UM, BECAUSE OF, UM, RISING RENT OR LACK OF SPACE.

UM, AND SO WE WERE EUROPE, THERE'S SORT OF THIS, THIS POOREST, UM, RING AROUND AUSTIN THAT ARTISTS WERE HAVING TO LEAVE THE CITY, UH, TO CONTINUE TO PRODUCE THEIR WORK.

SOME OF THAT, UM, HAS TO DO WITH POLICY AND SOME OF THAT HAS TO DO WITH PRACTICE.

AND SOME OF IT HAS TO DO WITH, UM, ISSUES OUTSIDE OF THE ART SECTOR, COMPLETELY IN THE SAME RECOMMENDATION.

WE WERE LOOKING AT TRYING TO GO BACK TO THE MANDATE THAT THE CITY COUNCIL HAD ASKED ALL OF ITS DEPARTMENTS TO DO.

AND SO IS THERE AN EXPLICIT DIRECTION FROM A CITY COUNCIL THAT THEY WANTED TO SEE OTHER THAN THIS IDEA ABOUT LEVELING THE PLAYING FIELD? SO LOTS OF INPUT COMING IN, SIFTING IT DOWN TO THESE THREE TOP LEVEL, UM, RECOMMENDATIONS EARLY ON AND SHARING THOSE BACK WITH THE COMMUNITY.

UM, SIX MONTHS AGO IN DECEMBER AND HEARING FEEDBACK FROM THE ORGANIZATIONS AT THAT POINT, AND IN THAT DISCUSSION, WE HEARD ABOUT THIS.

UM, WE HEARD A LOT ABOUT BUREAUCRACY.

WE HEARD A LOT ABOUT COMPLICATED GRANT PROCESSES.

WE HEARD A LOT ABOUT INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS, ET CETERA.

AND SO AS THOSE CONVERSATIONS CAME BACK TO US, WE WERE ABLE TO EITHER INFUSE THOSE INTO RECOMMENDATIONS OR ACTUALLY WORK WITH A STAFF IN AN ONGOING WAY, THE OFFICE OF DESIGN DEVELOPMENT WITH THE CITY'S EQUITY OFFICE, WITH THE CITY'S OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS TO FIGURE OUT HOW WE COULD BEGIN TO SHAVE SOME OF THOSE BUREAUCRATIC SYSTEMS DOWN.

SO WE NEVER STOPPED REFINING.

WE, WE MEANING OUR TEAM AND THE TEAM AT THE THREE TOP FUNDED DIVISIONS.

WE NEVER STOPPED LOOKING AT NEW WAYS TO THINK ABOUT THINGS.

I WILL TELL YOU THAT NUMBER IN THE INTERIM REPORT ABOUT HOW MANY STAFF HOURS WERE DEDICATED TO THIS WORK IS REALLY PROBABLY, UM, ONLY A PERCENTAGE OF THE TIME THAT THE STAFF SPENT RESEARCHING.

WE WOULD SEND THEM OFF TO GO LOOK AT THE POLICIES IN THIS CITY, OR REALLY TAKE AN ANALYTICAL VIEW AT WHETHER OR NOT WHAT YOU'RE REQUIRING IS NECESSARY.

IF WE'RE ASKING PEOPLE TO PROVIDE DATA, ARE WE USING THAT IN A WAY THAT WILL DETERMINE WHETHER OR NOT THEY GET FUTURE FUNDING? IF NOT, WHY ARE WE ASKING THEM FOR THAT? UM, THERE WERE WORK STAFF WORKING GROUPS THAT ARE STILL ONGOING.

UM, THERE WAS A SHIFT IN DIRECTION DOES, AS YOU COULD IMAGINE THIS PAST YEAR WHEN WE WERE LOOKING AT A DIFFERENT BUDGET SIZE, BUT THE COMMITMENT WAS TO ALWAYS TRY TO EXPLORE ALL THE THEMES THAT WE HEARD FROM THE PUBLIC AND DEFINE SOLUTIONS THAT COULD BE IMPLEMENTED IMMEDIATELY, OR THAT WOULD BECOME PART OF THE LONGER TERM CHANGE IN THE WAY THE DIVISIONS WERE OPERATING.

SO THIS IDEA OF REFINING THE WORK AND LAUNCHING NEW PROGRAMS, UM, I HOPE YOU WILL SEE, AND WE CAN TALK MORE ABOUT THIS AS YOU HAVE QUESTIONS.

THESE ARE NOT KNEE-JERK REACTIONS.

UM, THESE ARE CONCENTRATED AND FOCUSED WORK SESSIONS WITH LOTS OF, UM, INPUT AND RESEARCH THAT IS GOING TO NET YOU IN THE END, SOME NEW GRANT MAKING GUIDELINES AND PROGRAMS THAT BOTH RESPOND TO RACIAL EQUITY AND RESPOND TO THE PREVAILING PREVAILING CONCERNS ABOUT BUDGETS, BUDGET, SHORTFALLS IN THE CITY, UM, AND ABOUT REACHING NEW AUDIENCES.

[00:40:02]

SO I'M GOING TO STOP HERE, UM, FOR A SECOND AND HAND IT BACK TO MICHELLE.

UM, LOVE TO HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, UM, FROM YOU AS COMMISSIONERS THAT YOU MIGHT WANT TO PUT ON THE TABLE RIGHT NOW.

THAT'S GREAT.

UM, CAN WE STOP SHARING THE, UM, SLIDE SHIFT FOR JUST A MINUTE? SO I CAN SEE EVERYBODY IN THE ROOM AND SEE WHO HAS QUESTIONS THAT THEY WANT TO ADDRESS.

UM, MARGIE, THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THAT WAS SUCH A LOVELY, CLEAN EXPLANATION OF WHERE WE STARTED AND WHAT THE PROCESS HAS BEEN UP TO THIS POINT.

UM, I THINK THAT'S SUPER HELPFUL FOR ALL OF US AND I HOPE THAT HELPFUL FOR FOLKS WATCHING AT HOME.

UM, BUT I WANT TO SEE WHAT QUESTIONS WE HAVE AS A GROUP AT THIS POINT.

UM, NOW UNDERSTAND THAT JUST FOR FRAMING PURPOSES AND MEGAN INTERRUPT ME HERE AT ANY POINT, BUT THIS IS, THIS IS THIS STEP, RIGHT? WE, THIS IS STILL THE INTERIM PART OF THE PROCESS.

WE STILL HAVE FINE DETAILS AND GUIDELINES COMING AND MORE SPECIFIC DATA TO SHARE WITH EVERYBODY AS WE'RE MOVING FORWARD.

AND I THINK MEGAN CAN GIVE US A TIMEFRAME ON THAT.

WE JUST WANTED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE COULD ALL CONNECT THE DOTS.

THAT WAS THE BIG REQUEST THAT I HAD FOR MJR.

UM, SINCE WE HAD AN INTERIM REPORT AND WE HAD A LOT OF COMMUNITY RESPONSE TO IT, AND A LOT OF CONCERNS ABOUT IT, I WANTED TO BE ABLE TO GO HERE'S WHAT HAPPENED BECAUSE IT'S BEEN A LONG TIME SINCE 2019.

UM, AND THE FACT THAT NOW EDD HAS BROADENED MARGIE'S ENGAGEMENT, NOT JUST WITH CULTURAL ARTS, BUT ALSO WITH MUSIC AND WITH HERITAGE AND THE WE'RE ALIGNED ACROSS THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT WITH THE EQUITY GOAL IN MIND, THAT IS ALSO VERY HELPFUL.

IT'S ALSO A CHALLENGE AND TAKES EXTRA TIME AND ATTENTION AND WORK BECAUSE WE'RE MERGING THREE DIFFERENT KINDS OF CREATURES INTO THE SAME WORLD.

UM, WITH OUR OWN HISTORIES, OURS IS MORE LONG AS LONGER AND MORE COMPLICATED.

SO THAT THAT'S A PROCESS.

UM, I JUST HAD ON MY OWN QUOTE.

OKAY, GO AHEAD.

LOU, LET ME GO AHEAD AND ASK MY QUESTION FIRST.

OKAY.

SO ONE QUICK THING.

SO WHEN YOU SAID, UM, CENTERING ON RACIAL EQUITY, I WANT TO PUT A LITTLE ASTERIX ON THAT TO SAY YES, ABSOLUTELY.

THAT NEEDS TO BE WHERE WE START, BUT I WANT TO MAKE SURE AS WE'RE THINKING ABOUT THIS MOVING FORWARD, BECAUSE THIS IS JUST THE BELLY OF, OF WHATEVER THIS NEW CREATE CREATURE IS THAT THIS IS THE STARTING POINT THAT, THAT RACIAL EQUITY AND CULTURAL EQUITY, LIKE ALL OF IT NEEDS TO EXPAND TO SERVE, ULTIMATELY WHEN WE'RE DONE WITH THIS AND HOWEVER MANY YEARS, THE ENTIRE COMMUNITY, UM, AND TAKES EVERYBODY'S MARGINALIZED EXPERIENCES INTO ACCOUNT.

SO I JUST WANT TO PUT THAT LITTLE ASTERIX ON IT.

UM, COMMISSIONER FLORES, YOU HAD A QUESTION.

UM, YES.

THANK YOU, MARGIE.

AND, UH, THANKS MICHELLE FOR SAYING THAT BECAUSE I, I, I AGREE THAT RACIAL EQUITY, I KNOW IT'S A TECHNICAL TERM, BUT I WANT TO MAKE SURE IT INCLUDES, YOU KNOW, ETHNIC DIVERSITY AS WELL, BECAUSE, YOU KNOW, AS AN HISPANIC, AS A MEXICAN-AMERICAN, UH, WE'RE CONSIDERED WHITE.

AND SO WE'RE THE HIDDEN, UH, MINORITY GROUP THAT SORT OF SOMETIMES GETS GLOSSED OVER OR BECOMES INVISIBLE, UH, BECAUSE YOU KNOW, WE'RE TREATED AS, UH, A PEOPLE OF COLOR, BUT YET WE ARE OFFICIALLY A PART OF THE CONSIDERED PART OF THE WHITE RACE.

SO I JUST WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE DON'T SLIP BETWEEN THE CRACKS IN THE SENSE OF IT'S AN ETHNIC MINORITY.

WE'RE NOT A RACIAL MINORITY.

SO THAT'S A, THAT'S A GREAT POINT, MICHELLE, AND THANK YOU FOR AMPLIFYING THAT, BUT MY QUESTION WAS YOUR, IT WAS A VERY THOROUGH PRESENTATION ABOUT THE PROCESSES THAT WERE INVOLVED AND WHAT YOU WERE LOOKING FOR AND HOW YOU DID THAT, BUT ARE WE GOING TO, ARE YOU ALSO GOING TO MAKE A PRESENTATION ABOUT THE ACTUAL RECOMMENDATIONS THAT ARE IN YOUR INTERIM REPORT SO THAT WE CAN, UH, OR HOW ARE WE GOING TO DO THAT? SO THEN WE CAN ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT THE ACTUAL RECOMMENDATIONS THAT WERE PRESENTED IN THIS, YOU KNOW, IN THE POWERPOINT AND THIS, AND THE REPORT THAT WE WERE HANDED.

THAT'S MY QUESTION ABOUT, WE'RE HAPPY TO ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT THAT.

THIS MEETING WAS MORE WAS, WAS, WAS TO GIVE YOU SORT OF AN OVERVIEW.

UM, BUT CERTAINLY IF THERE, IF THERE ARE OTHER SPECIFIC QUESTIONS MICHELLE, I'LL DEFER TO YOU TO, UM, OF THOSE, UM, RESPONSES WILL COME THROUGH, AS YOU CONTINUE TO SEE, UM, HOW THE PROGRAMS ARE DEVELOPING AND SHAPING, BUT I CERTAINLY WANT TO OPEN AGAIN FOR, TO THE CHAIR, THE CONVERSATION TO, TO RESPOND IN WHATEVER WAYS WE CAN BE HELPFUL.

IF, IF I MAY, I, YOU KNOW, I THINK THIS IS WHAT I ALLUDED TO WITH THE WORK THAT CULTURAL ARTS DIVISION STAFF IS DOING RIGHT NOW, WHICH IS THE GUIDELINES BECAUSE THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS FOR ALL OF THIS AND THE KIND

[00:45:01]

OF THING THAT I'M HEARING WITHIN THE COMMUNITY, WHICH I TOTALLY UNDERSTAND IS A LOT OF FEAR AND CONCERN ABOUT WHAT'S INCLUDED AND WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED.

UM, AND THAT, THAT FINE DETAIL GUIDELINE CONVERSATION I THINK, IS GOING TO BE OUR ANSWER TO A LOT OF THOSE QUESTIONS.

SO I, I'M NOT SURE THAT OUR TIME IS BEST MET OR THIS HAS GONE A LITTLE BIT LONG, BUT THIS PARTICULAR PIECE OF IT FOR ME, WAS FROM PUBLIC PERSPECTIVE.

THE THINGS THAT I'M KEEPING IN QUESTIONS ABOUT ARE UNDERSTANDING HOW WE GOT FROM POINT A TO WHERE WE ARE RIGHT NOW.

AND I THINK MARGIE, AGAIN, THANK YOU.

THIS WAS SO CLEAR AND IN THAT PROCESS, I REALLY APPRECIATE IT AND APPRECIATE THE EQUITY AUDIT CONVERSATION, MEGAN.

YEAH.

I JUST WANT TO JUMP IN AND PROVIDE A LITTLE BIT OF CLARITY ON KIND OF WHERE WE ARE IN OUR STAFF PROCESS.

THAT'LL MAYBE HELP, YOU KNOW, INFORM THIS DISCUSSION.

UM, THERE'VE BEEN A COUPLE OF THINGS THAT HAVE REALLY IMPACTED OUR, OUR ROLLOUT OF THESE PROPOSED PROGRAMS AND GUIDELINES.

ONE WAS THE BUDGET AND THE BUDGET INFORMATION THAT WE GOT AS FORECAST, UH, WHICH WE SHARED WITH Y'ALL.

BUT THE SECOND WAS THE ACTUAL BUDGET THAT THE CITY MANAGER PRESENTED TO COUNCIL.

THOSE WERE STILL KIND OF IN FLUX NOW THAT THAT PROPOSED BUDGET IS OUT FOR COUNCIL CONSIDERATION.

IT HELPS TO GUIDE A LITTLE BIT MORE OF OUR SCALABILITY FOR THE PROGRAMS THAT WE'RE HOPING TO LAUNCH.

UH, THE DECISION IS STILL IN COUNCIL'S HANDS.

SO I DON'T, IT'S NOT A DONE DEAL, UH, BUT WE CAN PROCEED, UH, WITH A LITTLE MORE KIND OF MEAT ON THE BONES OF WHERE WE'RE HEADING.

UM, IF ANY OF YOU WERE NOT ABLE TO CATCH THAT THE BA THE BIG KIND OF DIFFERENCE IN THE FORECAST AND WHAT THE CITY MANAGER PRESENTED WAS A PROPOSAL TO, UH, FOR A ONE-TIME, UH, SORT OF RELIEF GIFT FROM THE GENET, FROM THE, UH, CITIES, UH, REV REVENUE STABILIZATION FUND RESERVES.

UH, SO I'M GONNA HAVE YOU, YOU, YOU CAN PROBABLY SAY BETTER, BUT WE GOT A ONE-TIME, UH, YOU KNOW, SORT OF INFUSION TO FILL THE GAP OF WHERE OUR HOT FUNDS WERE, UH, WHICH WE DIDN'T KNOW, WE, IF WE WOULD GET, AND WE IT'S STILL, YOU KNOW, PART OF THE PROPOSED BUDGET, BUT THAT IMPACTS OUR ABILITY TO SCALE OUR PROGRAM LAUNCHES.

NOW, THAT BEING SAID, WE'VE CONTINUED TO WORK ON THESE PROGRAM GUIDELINES, AND WE ARE HOPING TO GET THEM OUT TO THE COMMUNITY IN THE NEXT THREE WEEKS.

UH, IF YOU HEARD THE MUSIC COMMISSION LAST WEEK, UH, ERICA SHARED KIND OF HIGH LEVEL OF WHERE THE MUSIC LIVE MUSIC EVENT GUIDELINES, UH, WERE KIND OF SHAPING UP FOR THEM.

UH, WE PLAN TO RELEASE OUR GUIDELINES IN MORE DEPTH AND MORE DETAIL, LIKE I SAID, AROUND AUGUST 9TH.

UH, SO THAT'S KIND OF WHAT WE'RE WORKING ON, BUT THE BIG ISSUES THAT WE'RE STILL GRAPPLING WITH ARE SUBSTANTIAL.

THERE ARE THINGS LIKE GEOGRAPHIC ELIGIBILITY, FUNDING, TIMELINE PANELS, AND EVALUATION, METHODOLOGIES, FISCAL SPONSORSHIPS MATCHING USE OF A THIRD PARTY, UM, PAYMENT METHODS, ALL OF THOSE THINGS THAT REALLY ARE WE'RE THE NUTS AND BOLTS OF PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT, OURS.

AND WE'RE NOT QUITE, WE'RE NOT QUITE THERE TO BE ABLE TO, TO SHARE IT OUT, BUT HOPE TO BE ABLE TO DO THAT SOON, UM, COMMISSIONER GARZA, AND THEN COMMISSIONER NOT.

OKAY, THANK YOU FOR THAT REPORT THERE.

UH, UH, I NOTICED YOU GET A LOT OF INFORMATION ON THE NUMBER OF ATTENDEES THAT WERE PRESENT AT THE MEETINGS.

UH, HOWEVER I'VE BEEN ASKED BY OTHER FOLKS IS WHAT ARE THE DEMOGRAPHICS OF THOSE PEOPLE WOULD TEND TO, YOU KNOW, RACIAL DEMOGRAPHICS AND ALSO HOW MANY OF THOSE FOLKS WOULD TEND TO OUR CONTRACTORS.

AND IF THEY WERE CONTRACTORS, HOW MANY OF THOSE CONTRACTORS HAVE MULTIPLE 10 DAYS OF FOR MEETINGS? THAT WAY WE CAN SORT OF JUDGE IS WHERE YOU'RE GETTING INFORMATION FROM, AND IS IT THE SAME INFORMATION, OR IS IT DIVERSE INFORMATION? YOU KNOW, THE THING I'VE NOTICED IS AT YOUR STATEMENT, AS YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT THE, I BELIEVE YOU CALLED IT THE HISTORICAL AND THE STRUCTURAL DISPARITIES THAT EXIST IN OUR CULTURAL FUNDING PROGRAM OR WHATNOT.

A LOT OF THOSE DISPARITIES GO BACK TO NOT ONLY TO THE SYSTEMIC HISTORICAL RACISM THAT OUR GOVERNMENT HAS HAD, WHETHER IT BE THROUGH SLAVERY, WHETHER IT BE, IT WOULD BE 1929, BRETT LANEY, AND BOTH WERE WRONG, AND THESE KIND OF RECOGNIZES THEM, BUT DOESN'T CALL THEM WRONG.

AND IT DOESN'T GIVE ANY SPECIFIC NUMBERS HOW TO CORRECT THOSE NUMBERS.

FOR EXAMPLE, BACK WHEN IN 1929, UH, PEOPLE LIVE IN CLARKSVILLE, WHICH IS NOW MILLION DOLLAR NEIGHBORHOODS, BUT BLACK PEOPLE WERE CHECKED OUT AT EAST SIDE.

AND, UH, YOU KNOW, THAT'S A LOT OF WEALTH THAT WAS LOST A LOT OF OPPORTUNITIES THAT WERE LOST.

AND, UH, WE RECOGNIZE THAT THAT WAS WRONG, BUT THERE'S NEVER BEEN AN ATTEMPT TO CORRECT IT.

UH, AND I'M REALLY CURIOUS ABOUT WHAT ARE YOUR TIPS TO CORRECT? THANK YOU.

WELL, DIZZY, MY TONGUE MICHELLE.

YES.

IT'S YOUR TURN AT ME? WELL, I'M JUST SO GLAD THAT LIKE, I'M JUST UP TO PHILIPPI BECAUSE I'M EXACTLY MY INTERESTS IS, UM,

[00:50:01]

WE HAVE TO ACKNOWLEDGE, AND I W I THINK DATA HAS SHOWN THAT HISTORICAL FACTOR AND ALL THE FACTS THAT HAVE SHOWN THAT BECAUSE OF THIS SYSTEMATIC RACISM THAT WE HAVE A LOT OF MISSED OPPORTUNITY, YOU KNOW, UH, ALL THE, THE DISADVANTAGE, YOU KNOW, OR THE, THE, UM, OPPRESSIVE, YOU KNOW, UH, THE OLD PRESS GROUPS, YOU KNOW, THEY HAVE MISSED A LOT OF OPPORTUNITIES TO INVENT THEMSELVES AND, AND TO BE INCLUDED IN THE BIG PICTURE.

SO I THINK IT IS TIME THAT WE NEED TO MAKE A MEN'S, YOU KNOW, TO MAKE A MEN'S FOR THOSE MISSED OPPORTUNITY AND, AND, YOU KNOW, GIVE, GIVE THE EXAMPLE OF CLASS FAIL, YOU KNOW, UH, IT WAS, UH, YOU KNOW, BASICALLY THE BLACK COMMUNITY WHO ARE SERVING THE WHITE FOLKS, YOU KNOW, IN THAT AREA.

AND NOW IT'S PUSHED TO, YOU KNOW, USE AUSTIN AND ALL THOSE, UH, HOUSES THERE NOW, MILLION DOLLARS.

SO NOW WE HAVE THIS OPPORTUNITY, I THINK, UM, TO, UH, THE MARKET, YOU KNOW, THAT THERE'LL BE GENERATING MORE PROPERTY TAX FOR THE CITY BECAUSE OF THE OVER 40% RISE UP IN PROPERTY.

UH, I MEAN, PRICES.

SO I AM VERY INTERESTED IN THE THIRD.

UM, I TELL THEM THAT WE WERE TALKING, WE WERE TALKING ABOUT THE OPERATION, HOW CAN WE THEN TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE GROWTH OF OUR CITY WITH THE RISE OF THE PROPERTY PRICES? HOW CAN WE THEN UTILIZE SOME OF THOSE TO MAKE AMENDS, TO MAKE A MATCH FOR ALL THOSE MISSED OPPORTUNITY FOR THE OLD PRESS GROUPS? SO, UH, IT IS CERTAINLY A POLICY, YOU KNOW, UH, OPERATION, BUT I THINK THIS IS SOMETHING THAT I THINK IT'S A VERY REASONABLE ARGUMENT THAT WE, YOU KNOW, ALL THOSE MISSED OPPORTUNITY.

NOW WE HAVE A CHANCE TO MAKE A MANCE BECAUSE OF THIS GROWTH.

SO I WANTED TO ASK OUR, UH, CONSULTANT, YOU KNOW, MS. MARGIE, THAT, UM, IN YOUR EXPERIENCE, HAVE YOU SEEN OTHER CITY OUT OF STATE OTHER PLACES THAT I, YOU KNOW, LIKE SEATTLE WHEN THEY WERE BLOOMING, UH, NEW YORK WHEN THEY WERE BLOOMING HAVE DAY, UM, HOT COP, THE OPPORTUNITY, UM, TO, TO, TO MAKE A MESS, TO HAVE ACTUALLY POLICIES IN PLACE TO MAKE A MESS, YOU KNOW, UH, SO I, I'M JUST WONDERING AMY, I'M GOING TO HAVE, CAN I HAVE YOU MOVE FORWARD AND, AND, AND HAVE OUR OWN, UH, PROPOSAL HERE IN AUSTIN? CAN I INTERRUPT THIS TO SAY, UM, COMMISSIONER MACH? I THINK THAT'S A REALLY INTERESTING CONVERSATION.

I THINK IT'S A LITTLE SORT OF A SIDESTEP.

WE HAVE SOME WORKING GROUPS LOOKING AT OTHER FUNDING SOURCES, BUT I THINK THAT'S ITS OWN SEPARATE CONVERSATIONS WITH, I CAN PUT A PIN IN THAT PARTICULAR QUESTION ON BASICALLY REPARATIONS, I THINK IS WHAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT.

YEAH.

UM, THAT IF WE WANT TO HAVE THAT CONVERSATION, I THINK WE WANT TO LIKE SET UP A SEPARATE WORKING GROUPS TO, TO LOOK INTO THAT.

MR. CASTILLO.

UM, I THINK I HAVE A QUESTION, BUT FIRST I WANTED LIKE A LITTLE BIT OF CLARIFICATION.

I THINK WHEN COMMISSIONER FLORES BROUGHT UP, YOU KNOW, WHAT ARE YOUR RECOMMENDATIONS? I WANTED TO BE CLEAR.

I WANT US TO BE CLEAR THAT, UH, MJR CONSULTANTS PROVIDED THREE RECOMMENDATIONS THAT WERE IN, I'M FORGETTING ONE OF THEM NOW, BUT INVEST OPERATIONALIZE AND HELP ME OUT ON THE THIRD ONE.

UM, AND THE CONCEPT PROGRAMS THAT WERE PRESENTED ARE ACTUALLY COMING FROM STAFF.

SO I JUST WANTED THAT CLARIFICATION THAT, THAT M J R AS THE CONSULTANTS MADE THEIR THREE RECOMMENDATIONS.

AND THEN THE CONCEPT PROGRAMS ARE NOT EVEN RECOMMENDATIONS, BUT JUST CONCEPT PROGRAMS FROM STAFF.

I JUST WANT TO CONFIRM THAT CLARIFICATION, IS THAT CORRECT? YEAH.

OKAY.

MY QUESTION.

UM, I APPRECIATE THE PRESENTATION WALKING US THROUGH ALL OF THAT.

UM, I JUST, I, I GO BACK TO WHEN THIS, WHEN WE STARTED THIS PROCESS AND WE'RE, I WAS HOPING THE CONVERSATION WOULD, WOULD LEAD TO, AND I, I FEEL LIKE IT'S STILL SOMETHING THAT WE, AS A CREATIVE COMMUNITY NEED TO ADDRESS, AND IT'S THAT THE RELATIONSHIP OF THE CREATIVE COMMUNITY TO THE UNIVERSITIES AND IN PARTICULAR, THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS, AS BOTH AN EDUCATOR AND AN EMPLOYER, UM, AND KIND OF THERE AS LANDLORD ON SOME OF THAT, SOME PROPERTY CREATIVE PROPERTIES, UM,

[00:55:01]

AND THEN ALSO THE, THE LANDSCAPE OF PHILANTHROPY IN THE CITY AND WHY, UM, THE CITY OF AUSTIN AS AN ORGANIZATION BECAME THE DEFACTO SOURCE OF, UH, FUNDING FOR OUR CREATIVE COMMUNITY.

UM, SO I MEAN, I, YEAH, I WAS LIKE, HOW DO WE, HOW DO WE HAVE THAT CONVERSATION, THOSE CONVERSATIONS, IF, IF YOU KNOW, YOUR PROCESS IS KIND OF WRAPPING UP, BUT LIKE, THESE ARE TWO BIG THINGS THAT WE STILL NEED TO AS A COMMUNITY TALK ABOUT.

WELL, I THINK CERTAINLY THE EXPLORATION OF, UM, HOW YOU GOT TO BE AS A CITY, UH, THE LARGEST FUNDER OF THE ARTS IN THE CITY, UH, IS, IS, IS SOMETHING THAT WE DID TALK A LOT ABOUT.

UM, AND IT, IT HAD TO DO, IT HAS TO DO, I THINK WITH, UM, THE CITY'S COMMITMENT, FIRST OF ALL, ONTO SUPPORTING THE ARTS OR THE YING AND YANG THERE, UM, IT HAD TO DO WITH THE, THE SORT OF RAPID GROWTH OF THE LARGER INSTITUTIONS AND THIS TO ONE OF THE EARLIER COMMENTS ON AMY'S COMMENT, KIND OF, UH, THE INADVERTENT MARGINALIZATION OF THESE ARE THE DICHOTOMY BETWEEN COMMUNITY ARTS, SMALL C AND FINE, YOU KNOW, CAPITAL F, BUT OVER TIME, THE DOORS OPENED GREATER FUNDING HAPPENED AND THE PRIVATE SECTOR WAS GIVEN A PASS.

IT JUST, HASN'T BEEN AN AGGRESSIVE PUSH TO THE PRIVATE SECTOR.

IN SOME CITIES, THERE ARE POLICIES THAT REQUIRE, UM, BUSINESSES OR THAT ORGANIZE THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY.

AND AS ADVOCATES, THE CULTURAL SECTOR CAN GET IN FRONT OF THOSE CIVIC LEADERS.

I WILL SAY IN SOME CITIES, I HAVE ACTUALLY WITNESSED THE MAYOR OF THE CITY CALLING THE TOP 10 CORPORATIONS TO CITY HALL AND SAYING, IN MY CITY, IF YOU'RE GOING TO DO BUSINESS HERE, YOU WILL SUPPORT THE ARTS.

SO IT TAKES, IT TAKES THAT KIND OF LEADERSHIP MAYBE, BUT IT, BUT TO YOUR POINT, IT HAS TO BE AN INTENTIONAL CONVERSATION THAT YOU HAVE AS A COMMISSIONER MEMBERS.

AND YOU HAVE WITH ELECTED OFFICIALS, ET CETERA, IT IS A POLITICAL, UM, PROCESS.

WE'LL SEE, UH, AS FAR AS THE UNIVERSITY'S CONCERNED ARE CONCERNED, WE DID LOOK AT THE UNIVERSITIES WHEN WE WERE THINKING ABOUT RESPONDING TO LEADERSHIP, WHO'S COMING OUT OF THE UNIVERSITIES THAT CAN LEAD SOME OF THE ORGANIZATIONS, ET CETERA.

SO I DO THINK THAT THOSE TWO THINGS IN PARTICULAR, WE DIDN'T MAKE SPECIFIC RECOMMENDATIONS ON THOSE, BUT THEY ARE ACKNOWLEDGED.

AND WE DID HEAR SOME OF THAT FROM THE PUBLIC, BUT MOST OF THE CONVERSATIONS WERE ABOUT, UM, CITY EXPANDING PUBLIC FUNDING.

IT'S A GREAT QUESTION THOUGH, COMMISSIONER CASTILLO AND, UM, AND A GOOD REMINDER OF WHAT IS IN FRONT OF US, YOU KNOW, UM, MARGIE ALLUDED AT THE BEGINNING OF THIS TOO, LIKE THE, THE BROADER SET OF SUPPORT THAT THE CITY CAN PROVIDE.

BUT ALSO OUR ROLE IS TO LOOK AT WHERE WE CAN FIND OTHER SUPPORT FOR THE ARTS IN THIS COMMUNITY, FROM THE CORPORATE SIDE, FROM PARTNERSHIPS AND ALLIANCES, THAT WE'VE JUST BEGUN TO SCRATCH THE SURFACE ON.

UM, YOU KNOW, AND I SAID, WHEN WE, WHEN WE SORT OF WADE INTO THIS, AND WHEN I STEPPED INTO THIS POSITION, THAT THIS IS A VERY DIFFICULT TIME FOR OUR CITY, BUT IT WAS ALSO REALLY EXCITING TIME BECAUSE WE GET TO, TO REMAKE EVERYTHING CAUSE IT BROKE ON ITS OWN, RIGHT? THERE'S NOWHERE TO GO, BUT UP AFTER A PANDEMIC, UM, THERE'S NOWHERE TO GO, BUT UP WHEN OUR HOT REVENUES WERE IN THE TANK, SO IT'S AN EXCITING OPPORTUNITY TO SORT OF REBUILD AND, AND REACH OUT.

AND IT'S ALSO EXCITING TIME.

THE UNIVERSITIES ARE IN THE SAME BOAT GUYS.

I WORKED FOR ONE, LIKE THIS IS A PERFECT TIME TO HAVE THAT CONVERSATION.

SO BE THINKING ABOUT IN TERMS OF THE PRIORITY LIST AND AGAIN, GOT PINS AND STUFF AT THE END OF THIS NIGHT, WE'RE GOING TO COME BACK AND GO, OKAY, WHO'S, WHO'S GOING TO REACH OUT AND WHO'S GOING TO START THIS PARTICULAR CONVERSATION BECAUSE WE HAVE LOTS OF FUN WORK TO DO.

UH, I HAVE A QUESTION.

YES, MA'AM THE QUESTION IS FROM MARGIE.

YOU'RE DOING WELL.

IT'S GOOD TO SEE YOU, YOUR PEANUTS.

SO MY QUESTION IS COMING FROM, UH, BEING A PROFESSIONAL IN THE COMMUNITY.

AND I'LL JUST SAY, UH, YESTERDAY I WENT TO, UH, UH, THE BOTANICAL GARDENS, ME AND MY DOG WERE THE ONLY BLACK PEOPLE IN THE BOTANICAL GARDENS YESTERDAY.

I BOUGHT A TICKET FOR 9:00 AM.

I WAS THERE TILL 1130.

I DRIVE ON THE EAST SIDE PRETTY MUCH TWICE A WEEK NOW

[01:00:01]

TO CHECK ON MY PEOPLE, TO SEE HOW PEOPLE ARE DOING.

MANY BUSINESSES HAVE CLOSED, OR PEOPLE ARE JUST NOT COMING OUT.

I WENT INTO THE LIBRARY TODAY.

I THINK IT WAS MAYBE 10 PEOPLE IN THERE.

THIS MAY NOT FIT INTO WHAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT RIGHT NOW, BUT I THINK IT'S VERY IMPORTANT IN ASKING THIS QUESTION, MARGIE, OF HOW DO WE BRING BLACK PEOPLE AS ARTISTS BACK TO AUSTIN? I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHERE BLACK PEOPLE ARE RIGHT NOW.

ALL I CAN SAY IS THAT THEY'RE IN PFLUGERVILLE, THEY'RE AROUND ROCK AND THEY'RE MOVING TO WILLIAMSON COUNTY.

AND AS FAR AS THEY CAN GO ALL THE WAY, I WOULD SAY TOO, WHICH IS HARD FALLS, PROBABLY.

SO HOW, YOU KNOW, WE'RE TALKING ABOUT FUNDING, WE'RE TALKING ABOUT GIVING MONEY TO ARTS ORGANIZATIONS AND ARTISTS, BUT I DON'T HEAR THAT WHEN I'M, WHEN I'M THINKING ABOUT BLACK PEOPLE, I, WASN'T A PART OF THIS, THIS, UM, PROCESS HERE THAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT TODAY.

SO I DON'T, I DIDN'T SEE THE, THE DIFFERENT DEMOGRAPHICS IN THE ROOM OR WHAT HAVE YOU, BUT WHAT I'M SEEING RIGHT NOW, HOW DO WE BRING BLACK ARTISTS BLACK, YOU KNOW, BACK TO AUSTIN TO BE A PART OF THIS CONVERSATION.

AND I'M SPECIFICALLY TALKING ABOUT MY DISTRICT AS IN DISTRICT ONE.

AND I THINK IT'S A VERY, VERY IMPORTANT QUESTION.

AND I THINK IT'S A, IT'S A, UM, IT'S A MAJOR PROBLEM THAT WE KEEP BYPASSING AND ALL CONVERSATIONS AND COMMITTEES THAT I'M ON IN THE CITY.

WELL, IT IS A BIG PICTURE QUESTION AND A VERY IMPORTANT ONE WE DID HEAR FROM AFRICAN-AMERICAN ARTISTS SPECIFICALLY, UM, THAT THIS MIGRATION WAS, IS CONTINUING OUT OUT MIGRATION WAS CONTINUING TO HAPPEN, BUT I WILL SAY IN, IN AND HOPE THAT I'M NOT DIFFERING TOO FAR AWAY FOR YOU.

THAT THAT QUESTION IS CENTERED IN, IN SOME OF THE RECOMMENDATIONS THAT YOU'RE GOING TO BE HEARING ABOUT IT AT A POLICY LEVEL QUESTION.

SO HOW DO WE RECAPTURE RE-ENGAGE ENGAGEMENT IS BIG AND HUGE IN THIS CONVERSATION.

SO I THINK YOU WILL HEAR AND HAVE A CHANCE TO WEIGH IN MORE AS, AS THE STAFF COMES BACK TO YOU IN A MONTH OR SO TALKING ABOUT SOME SPECIFIC PROGRAMMATIC TOOLS THAT MIGHT BE USED TO ADDRESS TO ADDRESS THAT.

SO WHILE I'M NOT NOW, YOU KNOW, GIVING YOU A PEEK UNDER THE COVERS, UM, I WILL SAY TO YOU THAT SO MANY OF THESE BIG PICTURE QUESTIONS ABOUT RELEVANCE, ABOUT LEVELING THE PLAYING FIELD ABOUT, UH, BRINGING ARTISTS BACK.

YES, THE STAFF IS BRINGING BACK TO YOU SOME PRACTICAL SUGGESTIONS, LIMITED BY FUNDING LIMITED BY THE CURRENT CLIMATE, MIND YOU, UM, BUT THEY'RE NOT TAKING THOSE THINGS LIGHTLY.

THANK YOU.

UM, THERE ARE A COUPLE OF YOU I HAVEN'T HEARD FROM, SO I'M GOING TO REACH OUT AND SAY, RICK, DO YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS AT THIS POINT? UM, WELL, I'M INTRIGUED WITH, UM, KIMBERLY'S WHAT, WHAT YOU JUST SAID.

UM, MY FOCUS IS THAT ARTISTS ARE LEAVING AUSTIN.

UM, SO THE QUESTION CONCERN, UH, THAT BLACK ARTISTS ARE LEAVING, UM, HOW DID, UH, DO THEY FIT? I MEAN, I'M, I'M ASSUMING THAT THOSE QUESTIONS ARE PROBABLY ISSUES FIT TOGETHER, BUT THERE MUST BE A DIFFERENCE TOO.

UM, SO WHAT, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO ME, OR WHAT WOULD, UH, OR, AND, AND OPEN THAT TO ANYBODY FROM THOUGHTS, UM, HOW DID THOSE TWO THINGS FIT TOGETHER OR SEPARATE? I DON'T KNOW.

DOES THAT, DOES THAT MAKE ANY SENSE? I'M JUST REALLY INTRIGUED BY WHAT YOU SAID.

I WILL JUST ADD QUICKLY THAT THERE, THAT WE HAVE ALSO SEEN THAT NOT ONLY AFRICAN-AMERICAN ARTISTS, YOUNGER ARTISTS ARE LEAVING, UM, UM, ARTISTS, UH, THAT REPRESENT THE FULL DIASPORA OF, UH, OF THE AFRICAN CULTURE FROM THE CARIBBEAN AFRO CARIBBEAN ARTISTS OR COM CETERA, BUT ALSO LATINO ARTISTS AND HISTORIANS, UM, ARE LEAVING THE CITY AND FINDING WORK CREATIVE WORK IN, IN OTHER PLACES.

SO