WAACNewsletter
Volume 7, Number 3, Sept. 1985, pp.15-16

Art Legislation

Anonymous

According to Joshua Newman, an assistant in Assemblyman Farr's office, during an informal telephone conversation with the newsletter Editor last month, the impact of the 1984 California Heritage Task Force Report to date has not been substantial. Although, he said, people who are involved with preservation issues are naturally interested in the report, the action plan set forth by the report is an ambitious one. Implementation of the suggested programs would require a committed legislature encouraged by an active lobby. At this time Mr. Newman could only think of one bill which has resulted from the task force report. It is AB2387 which has been introduced by Assemblyman Farr. This bill, which would establish an historical resources grant program to be administered by the Parks and Recreation Department, has not received a lot of support from the legislature and is therefore called a "two year" bill. Mr. Newman encourages feedback from and the participation of interested constituencies.

Copies of the California Heritage Task Force: A Report to the Legislature and People Of California, August 1984 may be obtained by writing the Joint Publications office, Box 9D, State Capitol, Sacramento, CA 95814. It is stock #019-J and costs $6.89 tax included. An article by Ronald Tobey appeared on page three of vol.7, no.l of this publication. It discusses the recommendations of the task force report.

On the same round of phone calls the Editor was directed to speak with Paul Minicuchi of the Joint Committee of the Arts because this committee actively represents art interests and introduces related legislation. Among Mr. Minicuchi's current projects is the introduction of a revised 1% for art bill called AB44. Legislation for a California Percent-for-Art in Public Buildings Program would express the intent of the Legislature that this program would provide quality art works on state public construction projects. This legislation has been introduced twice previously. Both times it has passed the Legislature and has been vetoed by the Governor. It is hoped that current modifications to the bill will ensure its success. The bill is being introduced by Senator Garamendi who is preparing to compete for the gubernatorial nomination. Mr. Minicuchi stressed that this would be a fertile area for grass root support.

The above is only informal, easy reading accumulated through a series of phone calls to the offices of California state officials. This information is not intended to give the definitive word on either topic. Rather, the points of real interest lay in the easy accessibility of our representatives and in their very real need for public support. To paraphrase one staff person, "It's great to hear from you. We don't know what you all think about things unless you tell us and it's easier to follow through on legislation if we can provide evidence of support."

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