Thursday, January 16, 2014

Jan.14 Budget for National Endowment for the Arts Increased!

This is so important for all the arts, including literary fellowships for prose writers, poets, and translators. Especially in Kansas, where we no longer have an arts commission because of Gov. Sam Brownback's cut, this is welcome news. Here is the Americans for the Arts report of Jan. 14. 2014:
"Last night [Jan. 13], appropriations leaders in Congress finally unveiled the Fiscal Year 2014 Omnibus Appropriations bill, which includes $146 million in funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Thanks to your advocacy efforts, this is a welcomed increase from last year's sequester cut, and we avoided the disastrous proposal in the U.S. House of Representatives to reduce the agency by 49 percent!

Happily, the support for the NEA among Senate appropriators, led by Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) and Senate Cultural Caucus co-chair Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), remained strong and helped drive the final result.

Also included is $25 million in funding for the Arts In Education program at the U.S. Department of Education, which had previously seen efforts both to zero out or consolidate all funds.

The Omnibus bill is anticipated to pass Congress this weekend following a short-term continuing resolution allowing room for Congress to finalize the legislation. This concludes a very turbulent and often heavily divisive year that saw a fractious appropriations process and a government shut-down that lasted 16 days.

A breakdown of the final FY 2014 appropriations is as follows:

Key Federally Funded Arts ProgramFY 2013 Appropriations*
(in millions)
FY 2014 President's Budget Request
(in millions)
FY 2014 Omnibus
(in millions)
National Endowment for the Arts$146.255$154.466$146.02
National Endowment for the Humanities$146.255$154.466$146.02
Institute of Museum and Library Services$232$225.813$226.86
U.S. Dept. of Education's
Arts in Education Program
Corporation for Public Broadcasting$445$445$445
*These FY 2013 levels are pre-sequester.

Congress will now turn to work on FY 2015 starting with the President's State of the Union scheduled for January 28 and the Administration's budget request to follow about a month later.

Help make sure your message is heard as the next budget is put together by joining us in Washington, DC, for National Arts Advocacy Day on March 24 - 25, 2014, and let your members of Congress know the arts are important to you and your communities!

Thank you for your support of the arts! Please help us continue this important work by 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!"