Dear Access Tucson Members,
This is the most challenging time that Access Tucson has experienced in its 26 year history of serving this community.
Since January -
- Access Tucson has received no City funding.
- The operating budget has been slashed by 60%.
- City inspections have led to on-going, mandatory building improvements and repairs costing thousands of dollars.
- Half of the staff has been laid off.
Any one of these issues is overwhelming, but all together…well; you can see the obstacles to the process of reopening.
In spite of ALL of that—I have been amazed by the responses to Board Chair, Bob Kovitz’s letter to the membership. I have also had many conversations with producers and organizational representatives. These letters and conversations are full of ideas, hope and the absolute conviction that it is important and necessary to maintain this vital community resource. I have also received numerous and generous offers for volunteer assistance.
Access Tucson WILL reopen and I WILL call in all those generous offers. It just can’t be right now.
First, Access Tucson must get its feet on the ground financially through obtaining funding from the City of Tucson (we will receive the reduced budget amount this year) and through the contributions of our generous donors. The remaining issues with building improvements must also be addressed. For these reasons we can not reopen as intended in July and can not, at this time, specify a date for reopening. The staff will remain on furlough.
We do hope to be able to accept new programming later in July and hold Summer Session youth classes. We may be able to do even more. This will be a slower reopening and reawakening that any of us would like, but ultimately I believe this will lead to a stronger and revitalized organization.
I want you to be able to participate in this process. I want the Access Tucson staff and Board to be able to participate in this process. I want to listen to viewers, community organizations and entrepreneurs. I want to hear the practical and the wild ideas. I see good things down the road and intend to get there by conserving our energy and resources now.
We may be slowly finding our voice again—but as we do—it’s gonna get LOUD!
Please stay tuned to this channel for updates regarding services and events. Now is the time to contribute financially (any amount!) if you possibly can. Click on Make a Donation on the front page.
Thank you for helping to create, support and cultivate your community media center.
Acting Executive Director