Preparing Your Organization and Your Donors for Shifts in the Charitable Tax Deduction

On January 1, the 2018 Tax Cuts & Jobs Act went into effect, a substantial change to the U.S. tax code which has the potential to negatively impact arts and culture nonprofit organizations in a variety of ways. One of the most significant impacts will come in changes related to the thresholds and amounts associated with the charitable tax deduction. This 100-year-old provision was designed to stimulate giving to charities and other organizations serving the public good by providing an opportunity to claim a deduction as a reduction in an individual’s tax burden. While the repercussions of the federal tax code changes are still emerging, and corresponding shifts in state-by-state tax policy may impact your situation, the notes that follow are an introductory primer. If you have questions about state-level implications, we recommend you reach out to your state comptroller or state association of nonprofits.

Arts Advocacy Day Is Coming

Although years may really just be a number, in its 31 years, Arts Advocacy Day has seen six different U.S. presidents spanning both political parties. It’s witnessed sixteen different congressional sessions and eight different Speakers of the U.S. House. Through it all, every year, attendees hear that “the arts are bipARTtisan.” Because, no matter who’s in office, arts advocacy matters. Funding decisions are made every year. Who’s deciding this year may not be deciding next year. Who’s to remember what happened before? Who’s to know why it matters? Who’s to learn from each other? The answer is us. All of us. All of us together.

Behind the Business: Learning about the 2017 BCA 10 Honorees, Best Businesses Partnering with Arts in America

On October 11, businesses of all types and sizes from all across the country—Vermont to Hawaii and eight states in between—will come together for the BCA 10 gala at the Central Park Boathouse in New York to be recognized by Americans for the Arts for their outstanding commitment to the arts. But WHO are these honorees? Learn more about their arts partnerships below including corporate performance groups, extensive art exhibits, and some fierce board leadership. 

Artist as Administrator

Visiting a retrospective exhibition of the art and film of Robin Lloyd and Doreen Kraft reminded me of how many arts administrators are also artists in our community. In the workplace, artists have certain advantages, particularly with the never-ending aspiration to improve. While building upon technique and experience, curiosity leads artists to explore new horizons. And, resiliency and adaptability are central to an artist’s process, and crucial for an organization’s sustainability.

New Resources Summarize IMLS Support for Museums and Libraries in Each State

Thursday, June 29, 2017

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) released reports with detailed views of IMLS funding for the past six years (FY 2011 through FY 2016) for every state across the nation and the District of Columbia, including total dollars and counts of IMLS grants and awards, as well as amounts of grantee matches or state government maintenance of effort levels.

Arts & Economic Prosperity 5: How the Nonprofit Arts & Culture Industry Impacts the Economy in Your Community

When recently asked how best to advocate for the arts in the current environment, U.S. Senator Tom Udall (NM)—co-chair of the Senate Cultural Caucus and chief sponsor of the CREATE Act—was unequivocal: “Start by telling every one of your Senators about the economic benefits of the arts.” This familiar refrain is one we have heard for decades from city council chambers to governor mansions to the halls of Congress—and it works. Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 does just that. It changes the conversation about the arts from that of a “charity” to one about an “industry” that provides both cultural and economic benefits to the community.

Americans for the Arts Unveils Findings from Fifth National Economic Impact Study of Nonprofit Arts and Cultural Organizations and Their Audiences

Study Demonstrates That Nonprofit Arts Are An Economic, Employment Powerhouse

Saturday, June 17, 2017

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A new national study by Americans for the Arts finds that the nation’s nonprofit arts and culture industry generated $166.3 billion in economic activity in 2015—$63.8 billion in spending by arts and cultural organizations and an additional $102.5 billion in event-related spending by their audiences. This activity supported 4.6 million jobs and generated $27.5 billion in government revenue. 

Save the NEA!

The NEA is the only arts funder in America, public or private, that supports the arts in 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories. The NEA also has an exemplary partnership with the states, with 40 percent of program funds distributed through state arts agencies. This federal-state partnership supports tens of thousands of grants in communities all throughout the U.S.

For more info, years of NEA’s grants are also fully searchable online.

Two Dozen Senators Send President Trump NEA/NEH Letter

Support for National Endowments for the Arts and the Humanities

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

24 U.S. Senators, including two GOP members, sent a letter to President Trump outlining their support for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Arts, Humanities, and Public Broadcasting Funding Again at Risk

Seems like national funding for the arts, humanities, and public broadcast media may once again on the chopping block in Washington. Enflamed debates highlight fundamental disagreement over federal government funding priorities, and we can expect vituperative arguments again this spring as Congress determines budget appropriations. At the appropriate time, it will be incumbent on each of us to claim our cultural agency and let Congress know how essential the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, and Corporation for Public Broadcasting are.

Americans for the Arts Releases Statement on Immigration and Refugee Ban

Friday, February 3, 2017

Americans for the Arts releases a statement in response to the executive order signed by President Trump that denies entrance into the U.S. by immigrant and non-immigrant visitors from seven Muslim-majority nations.

Americans for the Arts Releases New Guide on Community Arts & Military Programming

Arts Deployed: An Action Guide for Community Arts & Military Programming

Friday, February 3, 2017

Americans for the Arts is pleased to release a new guide, Arts Deployed: An Action Guide for Community Arts & Military Programming, for local arts organizations and artists interested in bringing creative arts programming to military and Veteran communities, their caregivers, and families. Arts Deployed honors the highly effective and robust arts and military programs that exist all across the country and seeks to help close a critical gap, as the demand for these services far exceeds their number. 

FAQs on 'The Hill' Report of a Funding Threat to the National Endowment for the Arts

Thursday, January 26, 2017

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On January 19, The Hill newspaper carried a troubling report related to funding for the arts in the incoming administration. The article said that transition team advisors to the President are calling for the elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities and privatizing the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. There are many decision-making points in our federal process, and each of these branches and stages need to be informed so that good decisions result. What we do know is that the arts are a great investment in our national economy

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