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BREAKING NEWS: NEA Receives Funding Increase!

We have breaking news out of Washington, D.C. today.  Congress has released their final funding plan for FY 2018, and it is great news!

Congress is proposing to fund the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) each at $152.8 million. This is a funding increase of $3 million to support more direct grants and expand access to creative arts therapies for the military.

This final budget is in stark contrast to a year ago, when the Endowments were facing a proposed termination by the President — the first ever!  Since then, our #SAVEtheNEAcampaign has togetherBREAKING NEWS: NEA Receives Funding Increase! resulted in hundreds of thousands of calls, emails, local op-eds, expanded research, newspaper ads, and office visits.

Your advocacy, your persistence, and your time has made a difference. Congress has now decided to invest more funding into the arts.

This support from members of Congress in both parties is a testament that the arts are bipartisan.

NEA grant money is distributed to all 50 states and U.S. territories, and 65 percent of NEA grants goes to small and medium-sized organizations.More, over 40 percent of NEA-supported efforts are in high-poverty neighborhoods.

Communicating this important work has led to the third consecutive year of funding increases for the NEA. It is also the second time in a row that a Republican-led Congress has reversed a request from President Trump to cut our cultural agencies’ funding.

In fact, in the budget plan released today, none of our nation’s arts and cultural agencies incurred a budget cut. All of them received funding increases for this year (see chart below).

Final FY 2018 Federal Funding for Key Arts Agencies & Programs
Key Federally Funded Arts Program/Agency
(in $ millions)
President Trump’s
Proposal
U.S. House 
Proposal
U.S. Senate 
Committee Proposal 
Final
FY 2018 Funding
National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) *Termination $145 $150 $152.8
National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) *Termination $145 $150 $152.8
Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) *Termination $231 $235 $240
Corporation for Public Broadcasting *Termination $445
(plus $0 for interconnection system)
$445
(plus $20 for interconnection system)
$445
(plus $20 for interconnection system)
Assistance for Arts Education $0 $0 $27 $27
Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants $0 $500 $450 $1,100
Smithsonian Institution $947 $885 $878­ $1,043
John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts $36.7 $36.7 $36.7 $40.5
Save America’s Treasures $0 $4 $3 $13
Educational and Cultural Exchange programs $285 $591 $634 $646
Community Development Block Grants $0 $2,900 $3,000 $3,300

What’s Next

Today and tomorrow, the House and Senate are expected to vote on this agreement, and the President is expected to sign it into law. This will bring a final close to FY 2018—a long and bumpy roller coaster ride, and delivered 5 months late.

Going forward, both Endowments received that same termination proposal in the new budget request for FY 2019. However, the year is already off to a great start. Last week, the

Congressional Arts Caucus co-Chair Rep. Louise Slaughter inspiring the 2013 Arts Advocacy Day attendees!  Remember her full remarks here.

co-chairs of the Congressional Arts Caucus, Reps. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Leonard Lance (R-NJ) led a bipartisan letter calling for “at least $155 million” in FY 2019.

For the fifth consecutive year, that annual “Dear Colleague” letter has once again set a new record for the number of signatures—166 members of the U.S. House of Representatives signed this letter!

We are humbled and grateful, and also mindful that we will sorely miss the leadership over many decades of Rep. Louise Slaughter, who passed away on Friday, March 16. Rep. Slaughter set an example for us all about how to work hard for causes you believe in. We are all so grateful for her tremendous work on behalf of the arts and arts education. You can read Americans for the Arts’ full statement here.

We are also thankful to the more than 650 arts advocates who were just in Washington, D.C. for the 31st annual Arts Advocacy Day on March 12-13 and made more than 300 office visits. Our strategy was to keep asking for $155 million. That has been the consensus ask of the arts and arts education field represented each year at Arts Advocacy Day—every year now for the past 6 years. Your work is not in vain. Advocacy works!

Keep the pressure on. Measured by just emails, advocates sent more than 194,300 #SAVEtheNEA campaign emails to Congress. Your work will be needed to ensure that the latest proposal from the Trump Administration in FY 2019 is again defeated this year. Thank you for being an arts advocate.

Help us continue this important work by also becoming an official member of the Arts Action Fund.  If you are not already a member, play your part by joining the Arts Action Fund today – it’s free and easy to join.


Want to share this information on your social media platforms?  Click here for a sharable link.

 

 

Victory! The voices of arts advocates were heard on Capitol Hill.

Tonight (3/21/18), Congress released the details of its delayed current year FY 2018 Omnibus spending bill. I am pleased to share that arts advocates like you helped convince Congress to reject President Trump’s proposal to terminate the nation’s cultural agencies. In fact, Congress has allocated an INCREASE in funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to$152.849 million each. Please check our blog post for a detailed list of of Omnibus allocations to each of the federal cultural agencies and arts education programs.

This victory is such a fitting tribute to last week’s passing of Congressional Arts Caucus Co-Chair Representative Louise Slaughter, who spent her career in Congress fighting for the arts. She had most recently co-authored an Arts Advocacy Day “Dear Colleague” letter to her fellow Members of Congress recruiting a record number of 166 House Democrats and Republicans to sign a joint letter to House Appropriators to increase arts funding in America.

Together, Arts Action Fund members provided a strong  and united voice for the arts:

  • Grassroots arts advocates sent close to 200,000 messages to Members of Congress, thousands more signed our petitions and visited their elected Representatives and Senators.
  • Our Arts Action Fund PAC was incredibly effective in educating and supporting key leaders in Congress to take an important stand on the arts.
  • Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Ken Calvert (R-CA), soundly rejected President Trump’s attempt to terminate our nation’s cultural agencies.
  • Persuasive and timely ads were placed in political publications during key decision times to inform Members of Congress about the latest research on the economic power of the arts.

While we celebrate this victory today, we still need your support as we face continued threats from the Trump Administration to eliminate next year’s FY 2019 NEA funding. We need to keep the pressure on Congress. Please consider contributing to the Arts Action Fund PAC so we can continue to educate incumbents and the next generation of elected leaders, especially as mid-term elections approach in November.

Congratulations on a job well done!  Your advocacy has helped preserve funding stability for the nonprofit arts organizations in your state and community this year.

Nina Ozlu Tunceli
Executive Director


1000 Vermont Avenue NW
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Washington DC . 20005
T 202.371.2830
F 202.371.0424
One East 53rd Street . 2nd Floor
New York NY . 10022
T 212.223.2787
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[email protected]
www.AmericansForTheArts.org
www.ArtsActionFund.org

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