NEA Funding Disappears in President Trump's Budget

The administration provided few details in the outline of President Donald Trump's fiscal 2018 budget released Thursday, except to identify the arts and humanities agencies as two of 19 independent agencies - including everything from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to the U.S. Institute of Peace - that were being targeted for elimination.

In all, the NEA made 110 direct grants to Pennsylvania individuals and organizations for a total of nearly $2.5 million in fiscal year 2016, according to the PCA.

The same fate would also befall the National Endowment for the Humanities, which funds dozens of scholarly programs in California. "By defunding the NEA, this administration is sending a strong signal that the arts are not worth funding and that arts should be abolished".

Recipients included Zootown Arts Community Center, Montana Repertory Theatre, Montana Museum of Arts and Culture, Missoula Cultural Council, Missoula Art Museum, Clay Studio of Missoula and CoMotion Dance Co. "If we lost the NEA funding, we would lose about half our activities".

McEwen was grateful to hear comments by Rep. Leonard Lance (R-7th District), a Republican from Hunterdon County and chairman of a caucus committed to arts funding.

The NEA and NEH receive funding, which they then disburse to the states. Americans for the Arts, a national nonprofit organization, will lead its annual Arts Advocacy Day in Washington Monday and Tuesday.

Michael Lange is the Executive Director of the Wyoming Arts Council, which serves as the statewide pass-through entity for the National Endowment for the Arts, or NEA.

Deb eventually skimmed over why conservatives aren't fans of the politicized NEA, while hammering home what a pittance the arts endowment divvies out (while still contradictorily stressing its vital importance to American culture).

"Federal support for the arts and humanities is essential to our education system, economy and who we are as a nation", the letter to Trump said.

Tzougros said to preserve federal arts funding, advocates must remind policymakers that "elitism" in the arts is a "myth", and government funding actually makes the arts more accessible to all. "We have very good support from our donor base, we do a lot of local programming and our audiences respond to that". People are very concerned. In coming weeks, he said, the department will draft a budget to incorporate the cuts by setting priorities and "putting our people in a position to succeed". He mentioned several programs NEA funding is helping to support, among them downtown redevelopment through the arts, arts in schools, and a program at Camp Lejeune that uses arts to help veterans with post traumatic stress and head injuries.

Tuerk also says it would've been more responsible if the president had waited until he finalized tax reform that might stimulate taxpayers to support the arts, rather than tying the NEA cuts to a budget created to bolster defense.

Arts and culture have a local economic impact of $71 million annually, Ms. Darland said.

"On the national level, I'm not so sure", she said. And it is increasingly hard to find large alternative grants as foundations have shifted their funding priorities.

"It is easier to raise money from private corporations, from individuals, and from foundations if one can say that this project has been vetted by the NEH's rigorous peer review process", he said. Walker says the money fuels big museums, little theater companies and everything in between - from the Cape to the Berkshires.

"We should not sit idly by and just wait for those cuts to happen, we should get active about it". Of that amount, funding for the grass roots money would increase about $700,000, he said.

"Unlike Boston or Cambridge or even Worcester, Fitchburg has no local infrastructure of arts philanthropy", he says.

Working with large institutions, Stein says, "we downsize those exhibitions in such a way that they can travel to the most rural locations across the United States".

"Institutions like the Symphony, like the Playhouse, like the Ballet Western Reserve and other organizations in our community that are Arts related, Zona said".

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