18b Arts District neon sign. Photo: PaintThisDesert
CREATIVE COSTS: Bars get a break. Art studios get the fee increase. That's the argument from the Las Vegas art business community lobbying to negate rising fees in the city’s business license. It's a 30 percent hike that will touch “visual artists” working in studios they rent away from their home.
If passed, the business license will cost an extra $50, bringing it up to $200 a year.
“It's actually less expensive to apply for retail license, but there are proposed increases in that category as well,” e-mailed Wendy Kveck, the artist and arts educator working with others to curb rising costs. Organizers stated they tried to schedule a meeting with Councilman Bob Coffin prior to public comment, but there was no response.
“ . . consider taking a moment to submit public comment and in order to present a collective voice as a community of artists and patrons who are invested in the role of art and culture within our communities,” wrote Wendy in her outreach e-mail.
The increase will impact artists renting studios within "The 18b Arts District," one area of the city where bars and taverns are being offered tax and business incentives.
No incentives are offered to arts-based businesses, even as visitors from out of town wander to the 18B expecting to see active galleries. Many studio spaces, or spaces that can be adapted to be galleries, are vacant.
As it stands now, the motion will have its first reading at City Council June 4, voted on June 18, and implemented July 1.
The deadline for public comments to be sent online is May 21. LINK TO ONLINE PUBLIC COMMENT
DECADES OF PLANNING AHEAD: The Planning Commission for the City of Henderson approved a Historic Preservation Plan Thursday. It will forward to City Council. “Murals are part of the plan,” said Paul Andricopulos, City of Henderson City Planner, before the vote was recorded. The preservation plan for the old town section of Henderson was two years of work, and could be said was prompted by a 1968 plan. Also, chapter six in the City’s Comprehensive Plan is devoted specifically to arts and culture.
Above: Stephen Hendee created sculpture for the celebration of 30 years of public art programming in the City of Las Vegas.