CLMA Welcomes Feds' Financial Commitments to Music & Live Arts Sectors in New Budget

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland has revealed the federal government's latest proposed budget and it's getting a positive reception from the Canadian Live Music Association (CLMA).

In a public email to its member, the CLMA says it "expresses its sincere thanks to the Government of Canada, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, and Minister of Canadian Heritage Steven Guilbeault for today’s federal budget announcement, which acknowledges our hardest hit sector by announcing $70M to the Canada Music Fund, with $50M earmarked specifically for live music and live music venues.

Additional highlights from the budget include:

  • $300 million over two years, starting in 2021-22, to Canadian Heritage to establish a Recovery Fund for Heritage, Arts, Culture, Heritage and Sport Sectors.
  • $70 million over three years, starting in 2021-22, to Canadian Heritage for the Canada Music Fund. This includes up to $50 million in 2021-22 to help the live music sector, including music venues, weather the pandemic.
  • $200 million through the regional development agencies to support major festivals
  • $200 million through Canadian Heritage to support local festivals and other events
  • $49.6 million over three years, starting in 2021-22, to Canadian Heritage for the Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage Program ($14 million over two years, starting in 2022-23), the Canada Arts Presentation Fund ($16 million over two years, starting in 2022-23), and the Celebration and Commemoration Program ($19.6 million over three years, starting in 2021-22)
  • Canada Recovery Hiring Program, which will run from June to November and will provide $595 million to make it easier for businesses to hire back laid-off workers or hire new ones
  • Extension of CEWS and CECRA programs until September 2021

“Today, our collective voice which we all worked so hard to raise, has been heard. It is with great relief that we welcome Budget 2021, which clearly recognizes the integral role the Canadian live music industry plays in our quality of life - as well as its significant economic, social, and cultural benefits,” says Erin Benjamin, CLMA President and CEO. “Our industry has been devastated as a result of COVID-19. This support will help safeguard our nation’s critical cultural infrastructure - and the incredible people, artists and community whose passion and livelihood is live music. We look forward to working with the government to ensure it reaches each and every company and organization who needs it.  With today's historic budget, our government has helped us to believe in the future - and we can’t wait to get there, together.”

Because PM Justin Trudeau's governing Liberal Party only has a minority government, the budget, which was unveiled on Monday, will require the support of at least one other party in parliament to be passed. Following four days of debate and proposed amendments in the house of commons, with a final vote on the budget expected on Friday or early next week. If the budget does not pass the vote, a federal election will be triggered.  

The CLMA says it will continue to analyze the budget and provide ongoing feedback to the government and industry. For more information on the budget, click here.

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Michael Raine is the Editor-in-Chief at Canadian Musician and Canadian Music Trade magazines. He also hosts the Canadian Musician Podcast.
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