Senate Appropriations Committee Proposes NEA's Budget for FY2022

October 18, 2021

This afternoon, the Senate Appropriations Committee released its fiscal year 2022 draft appropriations bill for all federal agencies, including the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). In the document, the Senate proposes funding the NEA at $182.5 million. While this figure represents an increase in funding of $15 million over its current levels, it is lower than the $201 million figure approved by the House of Representatives. We certainly appreciate the strong support shown for the Arts Endowment, but are nonetheless hopeful that the committee can be compelled to endorse the House-supported amount.

To that end, if you are represented by a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, we encourage you to contact their office to express the following:

  1. Thank them for the continued support for the National Endowment for the Arts and state arts agencies.
  2. Acknowledge the significant increase proposed by the committee, but note that the House has passed an even higher amount ($201 million), and encourage the senator to support funding the Arts Endowment at that amount.
  3. In suggesting this increase, underscore that public funding for the arts and creativity is a high-return investment that strengthens every city, town and rural community nationwide.
  4. In suggesting this increase, share an exciting program or event being led by your agency, and mention that due to the federal-state partnership, 40% of the Endowment’s grant funding goes directly to state arts agencies and regional arts organizations.

While this proposed budget was unveiled today, it is not clear when the committee will consider it. Late last month, Congress approved a three-month continuing resolution that allows the federal government to operate under existing funding levels until December 3. As a result, action on this legislation could come at any time.

Thank you for your continuing support for public funding of the arts.