Artists rally to save their street festivals | Bleader

Friday, April 20, 2012

Artists rally to save their street festivals

Posted By on 04.20.12 at 04:56 PM

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Glenwood Ave Arts Fest
  • Al Goldberg
  • Glenwood Ave Arts Fest

Last November, the City Council passed a little-noticed ordinance that put a stop to alderman-sponsored fee waivers for Chicago's numerous neighborhood street fairs (as many as 200 annually). Now that the fair season is nearly upon us, the arts community has taken notice and an organized push-back is under way. Artist Gayle Weiss is seeking signatures for an online petition she posted this week, asking the council to change its mind and repeal the ordinance. "The people who can least afford increased costs—nonprofits and artists—are the ones getting socked with them," Weiss says. "The mayor shouldn't brag about eliminating business licenses when he's replacing those fees with ones that nonprofits have to pay."

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