NASAA Notes: April 2024

April 3, 2024

Support President's Proposed FY2025 Increase for NEA

March was on track to be one of the most consequential months of the year, with Congress facing a looming government shutdown and the President planning to submit his proposal for government funding to Congress for fiscal year 2025. Not only did Congress manage to avert two partial government shutdowns with last-minute, bipartisan agreements, but the President surprised many with an ambitions spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year that proposes to increase appropriations for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to $210 million, $3 million over its current allocation.

While we always seek the boldest funding level possible for the NEA, we are thrilled and appreciative that the administration continues to show support for federal arts funding despite the significant pressures to reduce spending. At NASAA we fully support this request and we are doing everything we can to push for that figure as Congress begins its work on the FY2025 appropriations process. To that end, we are meeting with key staff in Congress, informing them about the important work of the Arts Endowment as well as the unique federal-state partnership that directs 40% of all NEA grant dollars to state and jurisdictional arts agencies and regional arts organizations. This dynamic relationship ensures that grant funding is reaching every community in the United States.

April is a great month to reach out to your elected officials in Congress and to urge their support for federal arts funding. It is critical that these members hear from constituents because, while the President’s budget request is important, it is just that, a request. Congress has the constitutional authority to set appropriations for all federal agencies. As such, it can accept the higher figure, or propose something lower, as the House of Representatives did last year when it put forth a 10% reduction (which was ultimately defeated).

In reaching out to your members of Congress, we suggest the following:

  • Thank them for Congress’s decision to extend level funding for the National Endowment for the Arts for the remainder of FY2024 in last month’s omnibus appropriations bill. Given the deep cuts proposed in the House of Representatives, maintaining level funding was a major win for the arts.
  • Urge them to support the President’s requested FY2025 level for the NEA of $210 million, as well as the federal-state partnership, which continues to support state arts agencies throughout the country.
  • Emphasize that public funding for arts and creativity is a high-return investment that benefits every American in every city, town and rural community nationwide. (See Arts and Creativity Strengthen Our Nation for additional talking points.)
  • In asking for an increase in funding for the NEA, tell them about the tremendous return on investment they can expect for their support. Inform them about new and exciting developments at your state arts agency and about an arts related program in their community. These stories help make funding for the NEA real and tangible, not just another line item on a spreadsheet.

Please know that these touchpoints are a major factor in the deliberations members of Congress go through in setting appropriations each year. Hearing from you affirms for them that their constituents believe in the value of arts funding. If you have any questions about how best to approach your elected officials, please do not hesitate to contact me.

In this Issue

From the President and CEO

State to State

Legislative Update

The Research Digest

Announcements and Resources

More Notes from NASAA




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