With this year’s Congress well underway, we wanted to let you know where things stand for the arts as we move into the spring months. For starters, this was a record-breaking year for our 30th annual Arts Advocacy Day. Over 700 advocates (new record), including 88 National Partners, came to Washington, DC from all over the country to speak out for the arts on March 20-21.
Here are some further highlights on Arts Advocacy Day and further congressional news.
Arts Advocacy Day 2017 Highlights:
- Arts Advocacy Day attendees had over 400 face-to-face meetings with Congressional leaders and their staff on Capitol Hill.
|Ben Vereen, Brian Stokes Mitchell, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), and Gabrielle Ruiz at the Congressional Arts Kick Off
- One of the key items we ask of Members of Congress is to sign the annual letter in support of federal funding for the National Endowment for the Arts. Because of advocates like you, the U.S. House of Representatives letter led by the Congressional Arts Caucus Co-Chairs Reps. Leonard Lance (R-NJ) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY) has garnered a record number of 154 signatures! We had more bipartisan support than ever on this important letter. Thank you for all your efforts!
- A similar letter in the U.S. Senate was led by Senator Tom Udall (D-NM). This year, 40 Senators signed in support!
- At the Congressional Arts Kick Off, Senator Tom Udall and Representative Debbie Dingell (D-MI) announced their introduction of the CREATE Act in the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives.
- About 150,000 messages to Members of Congress have been sent by advocates like you from across the country participating from home.
- The House and Senate are currently in a 2 week recess and will be working from their home districts until April 25.
- April 28th, just a few days after Congress returns, funding levels for all the federal government, including the National Endowment for the Arts, expires. We’ll keep you informed about what happens next with arts funding for FY 2017.
|Rep. Jim Langevin (D-RI) leads extended debate on the U.S. House floor in support of the NEA and NEH
- On April 6, seven Members of Congress, led by Rep. Jim Langevin (D-RI), spoke out through a rare “Special Order” series of speeches in support of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).
- The Senate Cultural Caucus has two new co-chairs: Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) and Senator Tom Udall (D-NM)replaced Senator Mike Enzi (R-WY) and Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), respectively. Senators Collins and Udall are both committed to maintaining federal support for the NEA and NEH and Americans for the Arts looks forward to supporting the Caucus’ activities.
Thanks for supporting the arts and arts education!