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Betty Supports the Arts and the Arts Action Fund Supports Betty!

In Saint Paul with Betty McCollum

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
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One East 53rd Street . 2nd Floor
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www.AmericansForTheArts.org
www.ArtsActionFund.org

Breaking News : Arts Victory in Congress!

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

Federal Arts Funding, Arts Education and Americans for the Arts

Americans for the Arts                  - Arts Action Fund
              

It’s time for members to cast their annual 2018 Arts Policy Vote.

Arts Advocacy Day is just around the corner on March 12, 2018. The Arts Action Fund would like to join 90+ national arts partners with a unified message to Congress. Please cast your vote on these three policy agendas for 2018. Click below to vote and you’ll also be given an option to make your annual gift to the Arts Action Fund Political Action Committee (PAC) to support our legislative efforts.

Thanks,

Nina Ozlu Tunceli
Executive Director

P.S.  Please cast your vote by March 12, 2018. 

Grants, Winners, Poetry and Exhibit News from OAC February 2018

February 2018

News & Updates

A new Arts Commissioner, lots of grant news and a powerful new exhibition in the Governor’s Office — plus a preview of the 2018 Poetry Out Loud contest!

Matt Stringer appointed to Arts Commission

Matthew Stringer, the executive director of Four Rivers Cultural Center and Museum​ in Ontario, Oregon, has been appointed to the Oregon Arts Commission by Governor Kate Brown​. Stringer fills the position previously held by Libby Unthank Tower, who completed her second four-year term in December.
Matthew Stringer

Jess Perlitz named 2018 Joan Shipley Fellow

Jess Perlitz, a Portland-based artist working in sculpture, performance and drawing, is the 2018 recipient of the Oregon Arts Commission’s honorary Joan Shipley Award.
Perlitz leads a group of 19 Oregon artists selected from a pool of more than 120 applicants from 23 Oregon cities for the Arts Commission’s Individual Artist Fellowships.
Jess Perlitz, That Which is Set Before the Eyes, 2015. Concrete, foam, office furniture, paint.

Motoya Nakamura exhibits in Governor’s Office

Portland artist Motoya Nakamura is exhibiting “Images of the 442nd: Nisei Japanese American WWII Veterans and Their Continuing Legacy” in Governor Kate Brown​’s Office at the Oregon State Capitol​ in Salem now through April 4.
Motoya Nakamura, Kenny Namba, 2009, archival pigment print, 30 x 24 inches.

Poetry Out Loud winners named

Congratulations to Jaden Schiffhaur and Leopold Westrey, the first and second place finishers in the Feb. 12 Poetry Out Loud contest at Lincoln High School!
Jaden will represent Lincoln Saturday, March 3, at the Portland Regional Contest at Lewis and Clark College. Regional contests also are scheduled that day at Rogue Community College in Medford and at Willamette University in Salem.
Jaden Schiffhaur (left) and Leopold Westry (right) took first and second place in the Lincoln High School Poetry Out Loud contest Feb. 12.

Arts Learning grants announced

Congratulations to the 20 Oregon arts organizations sharing $193,001 in FY 2018 Oregon Arts Commission Arts Learning grants! The grants, ranging from $4,451 to $12,046, support arts education projects now under way across the state.
Teacher Bari Frimkess leads a recorder class for students in the Phoenix/Talent school district as part of an Arts Learning project led by the Rogue Valley Symphony Association.

Small Operating grants announced

Congratulations to the 79 small Oregon arts organizations to receive FY2018 operating support from the Oregon Arts Commission! Awarded to arts organizations in 29 towns and cities across the state, Small Operating Grants are designed to provide operating support to arts organizations with budgets under $150,000.
A Corvallis Guitar Society event..

Arts Build Communities grants announced

Congratulations to the 33 projects awarded $209,400 in 2018 Oregon Arts Commission Arts Build Communities grants! Arts Build Communities projects use the arts as a means of addressing community need. They target broad geographic impact and arts access for underserved audiences in Oregon. More than half of this year’s awards go to communities outside of the Portland area.
A studnet shows off her ring prowess during a Circus Project workshop.

Conversations with Funders and Partners happening now

More than $5 million in funding will be on the table when Oregon Cultural Trust Manager Aili Schreiner joins with colleagues from the Cultural Trust’s Statewide Partners and other funders for “Conversations with Funders and Partners,” a 14-stop state tour. Attendees will learn about grant programs available from multiple grantmakers and will have the opportunity to discuss their projects and programming. Other statewide programming resources also will be presented.
A 2017 Conversations with Funders event in Eugene.

Happy 55th to the Corvallis Art Center

January marked the 55th anniversary of the opening of the Corvallis Art Center. We are proud of your longstanding service to the greater Corvallis community!
Corvallis Art Center.
Oregon Arts Commission | Phone 503-986-0082 | www.oregonartscommission.org

What Happens to the Arts When the Government Shuts Down?

Rocky Budget Cycle Continues

During the previous shutdown in 2013, more cultural institutions, like the National Gallery of Art, were forced to close their doors.

Hello, 2018.  Congress is back in full swing, but little progress is being made on funding issues, including for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

Yesterday, Congress voted to reopen the government for 17 days, after a brief 3-day partial government shutdown.

This is the fourth short-term funding extension. This next short-term funding extension is currently set to expire on February 8th, when yet another showdown over many of the same divisive issues, including immigration, spending, and health care, may occur.

Despite these larger budgetary and policy issues, we are hopeful that, once there is a final budget agreement, the higher funding level for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) ($150 million, same as current funding levels), that the U.S. Senate proposed, will prevail.

What Happens to the Arts When the Government Shuts Down?

Message posted on the NEA website during the shutdown yesterday.

During the brief, 3-day shutdown, some major cultural institutions were able to keep their doors open, like the Smithsonian, by using prior year funds. Each agency determines which federal employees may still report to work during a lapse in funding. At the NEA, only 5 employees could remain at work. This massive staff reduction cuts off communication to the 50 state arts agencies and grantees in every congressional district, leaving grant project requests unanswered and unprocessed.

Each day of the shutdown, the more severe the impacts become for the arts community, impacting the health of our economy, cultural tourism, and access to the arts.

Next Steps and What You Can Do

Looming funding decisions for both FY2018 and FY2019 are still on the horizon. Vigorous policy disagreements in Congress will likely continue, and it is vital your representatives hear from you!

Arts advocates from across the country will convene in Washington, D.C. on March 12-13, 2018 for our annual Arts Advocacy Day.  Arts Advocacy Day brings together a broad cross section of America’s cultural and civic organizations, along with more than 700 grassroots advocates from across the country, to underscore the importance of developing strong public policies and appropriating increased public funding for the arts.

Attendees will attend advocacy training sessions and policy briefings followed by a full day of meetings on Capitol Hill with their U.S. Representatives and U.S. Senators.  The Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy at The John F. Kennedy Center will also take place during the two-day event.  Will you represent your state in Washington, D.C. this March?  Register now!


1000 Vermont Avenue NW
6th Floor
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
F 212.980.4857
[email protected]
www.AmericansForTheArts.org
www.ArtsActionFund.org

Together WE ARE Americans for the Arts

Americans for the Arts Joins Federal Amicus Brief in Support of Free Speech Rights of Congressional Art Competition Student Artist

Read a blog detailing the specifics of controversy surrounding a painting from a Congressional Art Competition, by Arts Action Fund Executive Director Nina Ozlu Tunceli

SAVEtheNEA Timeline

Click to view a 2017 timeline of advocacy actions that Arts Action Fund members took to #SAVEtheNEA this year.

Goodbye, Republican Congress

By Earle Mack, published Monday, November 27th in The Hill

UPDATED! 10 Reasons to Support the Arts

By Randy Cohen