Budget Axe Fells Vermont’s Office of the Creative Economy

Seven Days has an article on the closure of the Office of the Creative Economy, formerly run by Lars Hasselblad Torres:

Technically speaking, Vermont’s Office of the Creative Economy isn’t going away. It just won’t be staffed anymore.

That’s the word from Lisa Gosselin, commissioner of the Vermont Department of Economic Development, who confirms that the one-person office — “It’s really just a cubicle,” she notes — will remain unoccupied owing to state budget constraints. The OCE director’s position has sat vacant since October 2014, when its last director, Lars Hasselblad Torres, resigned to become executive director of the Burlington-based maker space Generator.

“Our goal is to continue the good work Lars started,” Gosselin says. “But there’s a challenge, too, in that ‘creative economy’ means a lot of different things to different people.”

Gosselin’s comments strike me as odd: it’s not difficult to put together a mission statement for such an office that would clearly define what the state’s intentions are for the OCE. While it’s interesting that the office will still run, without a director or central focus, is this office going to be effective? I doubt it.

Read the full article here.