Oregon’s cultural community, is in the midst of a fight not of our choosing. We have been selected for a sort of Hunger Games of our own.

The Reaping occurred four years ago.

The tax credit that encourages gifts to Oregon’s Cultural Trust was chosen—along with 11 other tax credits, to automatically expire at the end of 2013. Twelve of us will compete with one another, for survival in the political arena in less than a year.

If you care about preserving and growing a Cultural Trust for future generations, the Games have already begun.

The good news, for those who have a big vision for the future of art, culture, humanities and heritage, is that the Cultural Advocacy Coalition is in the arena on your behalf.  We are fighting for you. We are fighting for Oregon’s cultural nonprofits who hope for the day that the Trust becomes the game-changing resource it was intended to be.

We are fighting for the promise of tomorrow.

Though this is a battle we did not choose, our arena is Salem, not Panem—and in Salem, the strongest competitor is the one with the best grasp of the process, the one with the most compelling arguments and the most effective coalition.

To survive we need the strength of a broad, unified coalition. We need you. Join the Cultural Advocacy Coalition today. It is your voice that shifts the odds, your story, your support.

This process is not intended to quell any uprising and certainly isn’t punishment for interest groups who have the distinction of benefiting from a state tax credit. It isn’t cruel or unjust. It is not about drama or entertainment. It is quite simply a really tough math problem. And when the state’s economy seems to be stuck in neutral that math can seem a cruel dictator. But, it’s just math and legislators have no choice but to get it right.

Legislators are not gamemakers. They are not manipulating circumstances. They have a job to do and they created an open, public process to get that job done.

That’s more good news for us.

We are working with legislators to understand what information they need to support renewal of the Trust’s tax credit.  But, even though there is a public process and legislators are working with us to make sure we have a fair opportunity to be heard, our tax credit is still in jeopardy. The threat to a strong and growing Cultural Trust is very real. Public resources are limited. The odds are not in our favor.

But, with your help the odds begin to shift, the debate becomes richer and the resources stronger.

If you are not a member, I hope you will join the Cultural Advocacy Coalition today. We need you. The Games have begun. If you care about state support for arts and culture, this is your moment to stand with us and fight for the promise of tomorrow.

My best,

Christine Drazan, Executive Director