Yesterday, the U.S. House of Representative’s Interior Appropriations Subcommittee approved legislation via a voice-vote to fund the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) at $146 million for FY2016. If approved by Congress, this would be the 5th year of level funding for the NEA. Other key programs funded in this appropriations bill that have maintained equal federal funding level include:
- The Smithsonian Institute – $819.5 million;
- Commission of Fine Arts – $2.5 million;
- The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts – $32.8 million;
- National Capital Arts and Cultural Affairs grant program – $2 million;
Although these appropriations are level in comparison to the previous fiscal year, funding for these programs are listed slightly lower than the President’s budget proposal request.
The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent federal agency established by Congress in 1965. The NEA funds, promotes, and strengthens the opportunities Americans have in participating in the arts, while also partnering with state arts agencies, local leaders, as well as other federal agencies and philanthropic organizations.
The House and Senate are expected to consider the Interior and Environment Appropriations bill in full committee next week, where amendments may be offered, and leaving opportunity for members to match the President’s requested funding. NAfME will provide updates and keep a close eye on the continuing proceedings of these key appropriations for these essential programs that support music and arts.
Ronny Lau, Special Assistant, Center for Advocacy and Constituency Engagement, June 11, 2015. © National Association for Music Education (NAfME.org).