Concerns mounting for Summer Concert Series fundingPublished 10:08am Tuesday, March 9, 2010
By AARON MUELLER
Niles Daily Star
The Niles Summer Concert Series may be a little stripped down this year if the city does not receive necessary funding from the Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo, as expected by Community Development Director Juan Ganum.
The Niles City Council approved the submittal of a mini-grant application to the Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo at its meeting Monday night.
Ganum said the Niles Summer Concert Series has depended on a grant from the Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo for years.
Even though the city usually receives around $3,500 from the arts council, Ganum expects a dramatic decrease this year.
“Michigan has really slashed its budget for arts and cultural programs,” Ganum said.
He also said he expects next to nothing from the arts council this year, which could mean fewer concerts this year.
If the city does not receive funding, there is no plan B for finding additional money, according to Ganum.
The city should be notified by April how much grant money they will receive from the arts council, just in time for deciding the lineup for the summer concert series.
City zoning ordinance
The council also accepted the first reading and introduction of a proposed amendment to the city’s zoning ordinance on Monday. The amendment would rezone 705 North Second St. from a central business district to a neighborhood center district, allowing business owner Gene Millin to operate a vehicle repair shop on the street.
The amendment would also rezone 1017 Howard St. from an industrial district to a low-density residential district. A second reading will take place March 22. If approved, the rezoning would take effect April 11.
Green Michiana Month
Also Monday, Mayor Michael McCauslin proclaimed the month of June 2010 Green Michiana Month. Niles joins several other cities in the area in the celebration with events and activities that promote sustainable practices.