Backwash from the bay

We have an idea on how to stimulate Sacramento.

Instead of spending development dollars trying to lure high-tech firms to relocate here, we think a share of that effort and money should go toward luring arts refugees from San Francisco to this city.

An intense demand for commercial office space by the dot-commies has driven rents through their Mission District roofs. The well-documented gentrification has made it impossible for artists to find lofts that haven’t been taken over by high-tech men and women wearing black. A struggling artist (hell, anyone) needs to make $60,000 a year to afford a studio to practice and live in.

We’re somewhat sorry to say that the City by the Bay is no longer a mecca for artists and musicians drawn to cultural diversity. Now they’re repulsed by greed.

The artists are on the move (See, “Bring the Noise,” page 18) and at least a few of them in the area of music recording and distribution have already decided to make Sacramento their new home. We say welcome.

Let’s take advantage of this while we can. Why not get the economic development department, the Downtown Partnership, SACTO and the Metropolitan Arts Commission together and start a campaign to lure actors, painters, musicians, and yes, even mimes, to move east? The newcomers could bring a lot to the party.