Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott, Black organications

Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott Criticizes Public Funding Allocation, Citing Lack Of Diversity In Arts Grants

Mayor Brandon Scott pointed out how all of the funding tends to go to white arts organizations.

Baltimore City Mayor Brandon Scott expressed his deep disappointment with the allocation of public money on April 16. He claimed the funds go mostly to arts organizations that “just happen to be white-ran.”

He made his statements following the announcement of a nearly $4 million “Diversity in Arts” grant supplied by a bank for COVID-19 relief funds. The Capital grant recipients will include places like the National Great Blacks In Wax Museum on North Avenue and the Reginald F. Lewis Museum. 

Mayor Scott said, “For too long, public dollars have simply just gone to the big names and the big players in town. And dare I say, I know my staff is going to hate this, the big names and big players in town that just happen to be White-ran organizations in Baltimore.”

The mayor thanked the people who supported him in his fight to gain more equitable federal funding; specifically, he named President Biden and Maryland’s congressional delegation. 

The new grant will also fund 24 “project” recipients. Some allocations include “$200,000 for Baltimore Center Stage and $100,000 for Creative Nomads.” 

According to Mayor Scott, “Baltimore has always been a city defined by the arts, and our art community remains a cornerstone of our city’s identity, reflecting our history, diversity, and resilience. Baltimore’s arts community has always been there to express what this city is about, often giving a voice to the voiceless.”

In a statement, Wally Pinkard, chairman of the Hippodrome Foundation, expressed his hope that this attention will lead to more inclusive funding overall. 

“I would hope the enthusiasm around this week’s funding announcement, coupled with the frustration felt by arts organizations that were deliberately excluded from receiving an ARPA award, will lead to discussion of more inclusive funding of the arts in the future.”

RELATED CONTENT: Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott Snaps Back At ‘Racist’ DEI Mayor Label: ‘What They Mean Is Duly Elected Incumbent’