No Agreement Yet on FY2017 Funding Impacting the NEA
Friday, April 28, 2017
Today, Congress gave themselves another week to make FY2017 federal funding decisions, by passing another "continuing resolution" to keep the lights on. During the coming week, final negotiations are anticipated on this work, which was due to be completed last Fall when the fiscal year first began.
At the same time, congressional work on FY2018 is already underway.
To that end, in March, 154 U.S. Representatives and 40 U.S. Senators weighed in to support federal funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) for FY2018. These were record numbers of support on this annual letter and came on the heels of record attendance to the 30th annual Arts Advocacy Day. The letter is led in the U.S. House by the Congressional Arts Caucus co-Chairs Reps. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Leonard Lance (R-NJ), and in the U.S. Senate by Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM). These letters are delivered to the Appropriations Committee in advance of their bill writing helping to impact those early funding proposals.
This congressional work comes as the Trump Administration has sent two proposals to cut the NEA and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). For the current fiscal year, the Trump Administration would like Congress to immediately cut $15 million from the NEA and NEH apiece. For next year, FY2018, the Administration would like to fully terminate the two cultural agencies. Arts advocates from every state have sent over 165,000 messages to their elected leaders sharing why they oppose this proposal and instead support federal funding for the arts in America. Congress has not advanced either of these recommendations from the Trump Administration to date, as Congress considers their own budget priorities this spring and summer.