To the Editor:
The “Economic Development” Sound Off in the Jan. 30, 2013 issue of North Country Now discusses the Village of Potsdam’s $100,000 Arts Micro-Enterprise Grant to help local artists establish new studios and requests an explanation about Clarkson University’s role.
To clarify, the St. Lawrence County Arts Council received these funds to help five artists launch new art businesses.
One of these new microenterprise start-ups has made arrangements directly with the Arts Council to locate in the existing space the Council uses in Clarkson’s downtown Snell Hall.
To expand community access to St. Lawrence County Arts Council programs in addition to its Market Street storefront and to support economic activities for Potsdam to be a center for the arts in Northern New York, Clarkson University provides 2,621 square feet of space in Snell Hall to the Arts Council and charges a rent intended to cover utilities. This amounted to a total of $3,360 in 2012 and the same arrangement is in place for 2013.
The Arts Council manages the space and negotiates its own terms with artists who use the space independent of the University.
Rebekah Wilkins-Pepiton, St. Lawrence County Arts Council
Kelly Chezum, Clarkson University