PRCC gets arts grant

Published 4:35 pm Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Mississippi Arts Commission’s Building Fund for the Arts program, has awarded $2 million in grants to 13 Mississippi communities, including one to Pearl River Community College.

One of the 13 grants awarded is $350,000 to Pearl River Community College for reconstruction of the Performing Arts Facility that was located in Moody Hall and heavily damaged by Hurricane Katrina. Demolition of the remains of the auditorium began over the 2006 Christmas break.

The latest awards brings the total awarded since the fund’s inception in 2001 to $18 million. This represents 130 grants to 89 projects in 57 cities and 43 counties. Following a panel review, the commission’s board of directors approved the 13 applicants from across the state.

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The BFA program, funded through general obligation bonds, is designed to give the arts a stronger presence within Mississippi communities. BFA monies are used for the renovation, repair, expansion, enhancement and construction of cultural facilities.

“BFA is an outstanding program and a testament to the success of the arts and government working together,” said Malcolm White, executive director of the Mississippi Arts Commission. “The legislature’s support of this initiative is proof of the importance our elected officials place on arts and culture.”

BFA depends on strong and strategic local partnerships. Funding from the Commission can total up to 60 percent of a project’s final cost, but grantees are required to raise matching funds before state monies are disbursed. The Mississippi Arts Commission is a state agency.