Public Hearings to be Held on Bethesda and Silver Spring Arts and Entertainment District State Redesignation Applications

by Patrick Herron

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, March 9, 2022

In 2001, the State of Maryland enacted legislation which authorizes the Secretary of the Department of Business and Economic Development to designate arts and entertainment districts in which tax and other financial benefits will be available for arts and entertainment enterprises and qualifying resident artists.

The Silver Spring Arts and Entertainment District was designated by the State of Maryland in December 2001. At that time Silver Spring became one of the four districts selected for Maryland’s inaugural implementation of the new initiative to enhance business development through the development of the arts. Downtown Bethesda, under the management of the Bethesda Urban Partnership and with the support of Montgomery County, was designated by the State of Maryland as an Arts and Entertainment District in 2002.

Every 10 years, the state requires a new application be submitted for review to be redesignated as a state Arts and Entertainment District. This year, both Silver Spring and the Bethesda Urban Partnership are submitting applications to continue their work making the arts a viable and exciting part of Montgomery County.

This designation provides important tax incentives to local artists, developers and performing arts venues. Additionally, the districts plan to continue their work of bringing more public art, special events, programming and awards for local artists, and additional partnerships with developers and businesses to support the arts in our community.

A public hearing for the Silver Spring application will be held during the Silver Spring Citizens Advisory Board Meeting 7 p.m. on Monday, March 14. More information, including how to join the meeting, can be found at https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/silverspring/.

A public hearing for the Bethesda application will be held during the Western Montgomery County Citizens Advisory Committee Meeting at 7 p.m. on Monday, March 21, where the Bethesda Urban Partnership and Bethesda Arts and Entertainment District will review recent successes and present the goals for the future of the district. More information and link to join the meeting can be found at https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/bcc/.

Everyone is invited to make comments during these virtual public meetings.

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