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Victoria chops support to book, magazine industries

In a move sure to startle the British Columbia book and magazine industries, the Campbell government has slashed their support.

As reported on Thursday by CBC News and the Globe and Mail, the Arts and Culture Branch of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and the Arts has cut funding from the Association of Book Publishers of British Columbia, the B.C. Association of Magazine Publishers, and BC BookWorld, a monthly newspaper about books published here.

According to the Globe and Mail, the ministry phoned the organizations on Tuesday:

“It's devastating,” says Margaret Reynolds, executive director of the ABPBC. Her organization has lost $45,000 in funding – out of a yearly $290,000 budget.

“It's a massive amount,” she says. “It's also demoralizing. You think you're in a sophisticated society and you find out that this is not actually the case, so it's very distressing.”

The ministry's own website on Thursday night had no mention of this, or any other event more recent than September 21.

Comments on the CBC and Globe and Mail websites were generally supportive of the cuts.

Crawford Kilian is a contributing editor of The Tyee.

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