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City auditor says clear goals and contract improvements needed to ensure Regional Arts and Culture C

PORTLAND, OREGON – CITY HALL – The City should ensure that the work of the Regional Arts and Culture Council is aligned with City priorities and improve oversight of its $8.3 million contract with the not-for-profit organization, according to an audit released today by City Auditor Mary Hull Caballero.

The City has contracted with the Arts Council for more than 20 years. The Arts Council is a regional organization, and its responsibilities include strategic planning and policy development for arts and culture. The Arts Council administers grants and arts education programs and is the steward of the City’s public art collection. In 2017, the City provided the Arts Council with $8.3 million, more than 70 percent of the Arts Council’s budget. The City’s current contract with the Arts Council expires in July 2018, and City staff are considering changes to it.

Auditors found that risks exist because the City does not have clear goals for arts and culture, the Arts Council needs to articulate its strategy and regional role, and the City’s contract and oversight of it needs improvement.

Auditors will share the results of their audit in a work session with City Council on May 22, 2018, at 9:30 a.m. in Council Chambers.

Responses to the audit from Mayor Ted Wheeler and Commissioner Nick Fish, and the Art Council’s Board Chair Mike Golub and Interim Director Jeff Hawthorne are included in the report.

The full report:

Report highlights:

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