Compared to last year, the operating costs of cultural institutions will not decrease, said Deputy Mayor István Puskás at his press conference on 22 February 2021. The Deputy mayor stressed that they are already planning more boldly for the second half of the year, but at the same time, there have been several scenarios for the flower carnival.
The press conference was hosted by the Vojtina Puppet Theater, where work is currently underway on the roof structure and the design of the Henrik Kemény Museum, which the Deputy Mayor said will be an exciting and important part of the city’s cultural life.
Among other things, István Puskás spoke about the fact that although cultural life has been forced into a forced path due to the epidemic situation, the creators and theaters do not rest, as they have moved their events online and are actively preparing to return to the audience in person as soon as possible.
He said the 2021 budget will not reduce the operating costs of cultural institutions compared to last year. The city provides a stable background for all institutions to operate.
Although the end of the epidemiological restrictions is not known, it is currently planned that the cultural events will be able to return to public spaces in late spring or during the summer, like last year.
In connection with the reopening, the use of public spaces will be free of charge for cultural programs, like last year. The municipality is also trying to make the conditions for street music or street drawing easier so that even more people can contribute to the cultural life of the city in public areas.
The city will help not only cultural institutions but also the creative communities that operate there, this is reflected in this year’s budget. István Puskás highlighted Rocksuli as an example, as the local government supports the operation of the organization with a much larger amount, three million forints, compared to last year.
He also talked about the fact that, in order to help cultural life, the Tócóskert was included as a priority area for development in the cultural strategy adopted by the local government, with the aim of opening up a community space here again this year.
According to the new financing model launched last year, the state and the local government jointly finance the operation of the institutions. László Papp, the mayor, said earlier that the financing of theaters is also part of the negotiations with the government in that the Association of County Towns has presented a package of proposals to the government, part of which is to the Csokonai Theater and the Vojtina Theater, this year the government will play a bigger role in supporting theaters.
The decrease in funding at the Déri Museum is due to the fact that archaeological revenues are expected to be lower, but this does not affect the stable operation of the institution.
This year, DEMKI Nonprofit Kft., formed from the merger of DMK and the Youth House, can manage HUF 228 million from the budget, of which it can perform its new public cultural tasks. In addition to the DEMKI network, other venues, such as the B24 Gallery on Batthyány Street, are also returning to cultural life. Important changes will take place here again, as the German Cultural Forum will move here. In addition to municipal funding, the Kodály Philharmonic will be enriched with additional state subsidies this year.
Regarding the investments of the theaters, the total amount necessary for the construction of the Latinovits and Csokonai Theater is available in the city budget.
István Puskás also talked about the Flower Carnival in Debrecen and major summer city events, such as wine and jazz days, and said several scenarios were created.
Overall, a stable and secure budget was prepared for the cultural area of Debrecen – concluded Deputy Mayor István Puskás.