N.S. creates 'one-stop shop' for artist programs

Nova Scotia is merging the government programs that help artists make a living in the province.

The new agency will be called Film and Creative Industries Nova Scotia. Percy Paris, the minister of economic development, said the "one-stop shop" will allow for a greater focus on the arts.

"Currently, provincial programs which support creative business development are spread across departments, creating unnecessary barriers to business growth. Today we are changing this," Paris said Friday.

The agency will take over all the work now done by Film Nova Scotia and five other programs currently administered by the province.

The Dexter government hopes to release a five-year strategic plan for the industry next year.

David MacLeod, a television producer, said it was a good move.

"The creative economy is a lot more than film and television. It encompasses music, publishing, software engineering, gaming, all sorts of things that contribute a lot of economic activity and jobs," he said.

"I think it's a really smart idea to co-ordinate a long-term strategic plan for the creative economy in Nova Scotia and put it under one roof."

The government is looking for someone to head the new agency. MacLeod said the head will need skills and vision to lead the sector.

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