Assemblywoman Joan L. Millman Announces New Program to Provide Affordable Live/Work Space for Artists

Governor Spitzer signs Millman’s legislation into law
August 30, 2007
Brooklyn – Assemblywoman Joan L. Millman is pleased to announce that Governor Spitzer has signed legislation (A.5202A) that she authored to create affordable live/work space for artists. The new law authorizes the New York State Council on the Arts to develop a pilot grant program conducted in the cities of Syracuse, Rochester, Kingston and New York in order to provide financial assistance to working artists to secure "shared-use" facilities.

“As New Yorkers, we pride ourselves on the breadth and diversity of the arts community that has shaped the unique character of this City and State,” said Assemblywoman Joan L. Millman. “But we are on the verge of losing this priceless asset unless we truly commit ourselves to helping artists secure affordable live-work space. I applaud Governor Spitzer for signing this legislation, and reaffirming our support for the creative community in New York State.”

Soaring real estate values in the region are threatening the economic viability of the arts community in New York, forcing artists to move to other parts of the country where the cost of living is lower. This trend is having a detrimental effect on New York’s unique stature as a world leader in arts and entertainment, and the economic benefit in commerce and tourism generated by this valuable resource.

Assemblywoman Millman’s district includes DUMBO and Vinegar Hill, prime examples of how the arts community has transformed these areas into thriving residential and commercial centers. Unfortunately, although artists were the driving force behind the revitalization of these neighborhoods, they are being driven out by the corresponding rise in property values.

This legislation will take effect immediately.