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Inquiry into Senator Brandis' extraordinary arts rip-off

The Greens have combined with the Labor Party and Senate crossbenchers to initiate an inquiry into Senator George Brandis’ unprecedented raid on Commonwealth Arts funding.

Senator Fifield: The Government does not support this motion. As recently as three weeks ago, Senators had the opportunity to ask questions of the Minister, relevant agencies and officials on budget decisions on the arts...

Senator Ludlam: Guess who that leaves out? The entire arts community!

They weren't actually able to provide evidence on this extraordinary rip-off that Senator Brandis has perpetuated on arts funding and I - and Senator Collins on behalf of the Labor Party - would like to take more evidence than that provided by Senator Brandis.

So, I look forward to the concurrence of the Senate to get this inquiry on foot.
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The Greens have combined with the Labor Party and Senate crossbenchers to initiate an inquiry into Senator George Brandis’ unprecedented raid on Commonwealth Arts funding.
The Government sent shock waves through the arts community with its $105 million budget-night raid on the Australia Council. Senator Brandis has established his own Departmental funding pool with no guidelines and no evident purpose apart from to play favourites and undermine the independence of the Australia Council.

Senator Brandis told a Budget Estimates hearing that no arts organisations were consulted on the formation of his National Program for Excellence in the Arts, as though it sprang fully-formed from his brow. Now it is time to hear from the arts community how they will be impacted, where the cuts will hit hardest, and how we can protect arts funding from the kind of shallow politicisation that seems to infect everything this Government does.

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