From: Isaac Brown, Legislative Counsel
This morning, the House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over the budget of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), released the agency’s draft budget for fiscal year 2016. The bill proposes funding for the NEA at $146,021,000. This number matches the agency’s current level. While that number is below the president’s request of almost $148 million, and well below the $155 million arts advocates were seeking, it is important to note that just last year, the same committee initially proposed cutting the NEA’s budget to $138 million. Further, sequestration, which requires federal funding to be reduced each year, remains in effect.
Also of interest, the committee recommends funding the National Endowment for the Humanities at $146,021,000 for FY2016.
In releasing the bill, the committee announced that it plans to hold a hearing to mark up the bill tomorrow morning, June 10. If you are represented by someone on the House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee (see list below), please reach out to their office to share the following:
House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee
With the House committee moving on this bill, it is looking quite possible that the House could pass the bill by the time it adjourns for the August recess. Although the Senate has not yet released its draft bill for the NEA’s budget, the Senate Appropriations Committee has begun the process of considering appropriations bills for other agencies. As a result, it is quite possible that the House and Senate could pass their legislation before Labor Day. What remains to be seen is whether both the House and Senate will support similar funding levels. If they do, the NEA will likely have its budget set before the fiscal year expires on September 30.