NATIONAL NEWS: The SAANBox - July 19, 2017


July 19, 2017




National Arts Marketing Project Conference
November 10-13, 2017

The Peabody Memphis
Memphis, Tennessee

2018 Annual Convention
June 8 - 10, 2018

Hyatt Regency Denver
Denver, Colorado

National Arts Marketing Project Conference
November 9-12, 2018

The Westin Seattle
Seattle, Washington


SAAN Fall 2017 Meeting
November 2-3, 2017

Denver, CO


If you have any events to be posted, please contact Lizzie Dorman at[email protected].




Federal News

Late on July 18, the full House Appropriations Committee met and approved funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) at $145 million for Fiscal Year 2018. This meeting completes the U.S. House Committee consideration and advances the proposal to a possible action on the U.S. House floor in the coming weeks. 

This House proposal falls short of the funding the NEA at $155 million requested by a record bipartisan group of 154 members of Congress. While FY18 funding is a $5 million decrease from FY17, the House Appropriations Committee did not take up the termination proposal sought by the Administration in March. In fact, the picture (right) shows the U.S. House report which notes the "broad bipartisan support" of the NEA's participation in theNational Initiative for Arts & Health in the Military, led by Americans for the Arts. (Be sure to check out the NEA's Creative Forces for more information about that specific program also referenced in the report).
In terms of next steps, members of Congress are now discussing how to continue work to pass these proposals before funding runs out at the end of September. Still to come is the U.S. Senate's proposal expected after Labor Day. Similar to the request made by members in the House, 40 Senators requested NEA funding of at least $150 million for FY 2018.   

Stay tuned for future SAANBox updates, and for more information, check out the Arts Mobilization Center and the Arts Action Fund.


State and Local News


§  The Illinois House voted on July 6 to override the governor's veto of the Fiscal Year 2018 state budget. Now, after more than two fiscal years without a full-year budget, Illinois finally has a state budget.

As background information provided by SAAN member Arts Alliance Illinois, the General Assembly passed an amended SB 9, which includes two tax increases aimed at generating $5 billion in additional revenue for the state. The General Assembly also approved SB 6, the full state budget for FY18 ($31.6 billion), and a budget implementation billSB 42. The governor then vetoed the bills, but the Senate responded by overriding the veto. The House did the same, which secured a long overdue state budget for FY18. 

Like other state agencies, the Illinois Arts Council Agency (IACA) will see a reduction of 2% in state funding compared to FY15. IACA will receive $9.9 million in state general revenue funds, for a total budget of $10.9 million. Of note, there were no cuts made to the Illinois State Board of Education's "Arts and Foreign Language" line item, which remains funded at $500,000. 

Congratulations to Illinois arts advocates for their marathon advocacy effort!

§  In a SAANBox update, the Massachusetts' state legislature's Conference Committee met to reconcile the House and Senate budgets. For FY2018, the House recommended funding the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC) at $10 million, a 28% decrease, with the Senate recommending $16.5 million, an 18% increase. On July 7, Massachusetts lawmakers passed the FY18 budget with $14 million in level funding for the MCC and submitted the state budget bill to the governor's office for approval.

However, on July 18, Governor Charlie Baker vetoed the Legislature's FY18 budget for the MCC and decreased the MCC's budget to $12.1 million, a funding cut of 14%. Presently, the Legislature's chairs of the Tourism, Arts, and Cultural Development Committee, Senator Adam Hinds of Pittsfield and Representative Cory Atkins of Concord, are circulating a letter among colleagues to rally around an override of the Governor's arts veto.

The SAANBox will report on further developments.


§  In a SAANBox update, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, Cultural Affairs Commissioner Tom Finkelpearl, and Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer released CreateNYC on July 19. It is New York City's first-ever comprehensive cultural plan. Based on feedback from nearly 200,000 residents, CreateNYC lays out a blueprint for expanding the city's cultural sector and targeting more financial investments to address historically underserved communities across all five boroughs. 

Additionally, CreateNYC recommends translations services for arts organizations, new funding to support cultural workers with disabilities, and a professional development program to diversify the leadership pipeline in arts and cultural institutions. Also, the city would help arts organizations become more green and increase direct support to artists, particularly those working with and in historically disenfranchised communities. City officials commented they will continue surveying organizations on the diversity of their boards and staffs, with results potentially influencing funding decisions.

§  The Miami-Dade County Commission unanimously approved a county-based film incentive program on July 18To qualify for the program's maximum $100,000 subsidy, a film or television production would need to spend at least $1 million within the county; film 70% of its footage in Miami-Dade; hire at least 50 county residents; and have Miami-Dade firms make up at least 80% of the production's vendors. An extended application and audit process would delay payouts for months after production. The program wants to offset the amount of productions leaving due to the Florida state legislature allowing the statewide film tax credit program to sunset. However, the county's budget office has set aside no production-subsidy dollars for the fiscal year that begins on October 1, 2017.


2017 NAMP Conference Registration is Now Open!


Change is banging on your door. New software, new apps, new audiences, and the hundredth update to Facebook – as arts marketers, you strive to run ahead of change rather than catch up to it.

On November 10-13, 2017 in Memphis, TN—join more than 650 of your fellow arts marketers to explore and answer the question, What's next?  New skills, new tactics, new ways to tell stories and new visions - the 2017 NAMP Conference is THE conference to take your career to the next level and help define what is next for arts marketing.

This year, over 100 experts and more than 30 sessions will focus on cutting edge technology and the latest innovations across:

§  Storytelling

§  Cultural Equity

§  Digital Marketing

§  Social Media

§  Evaluation and Analytics

§  Growth and New Revenue Streams

We know every dollar counts for small and large arts organizations, so we're offering three of our best ways to save:

§  Scholarships – Apply for a full-ride scholarship by July 21Opportunities are available for Americans for the Arts' members, emerging leaders and many more.

§  Early-bird registration – Register by August 25 and save $100!

§  Become a Member of Americans for the Arts to save up to $100 on your conference registration and $75 on your preconference registration. And member benefits go beyond NAMP savings with tools and resources all year long!


Tech Talk

Arts U Learning Opportunities

§  Membership Briefing: Americans for the Arts Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Update
Monday, July 24 at 3:00 pm Eastern

Join us for this members only 30 minute call to discuss Americans for the Arts' Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work directly with Americans for the Arts staff and board members. We'll update you with the latest news, our position on the issue, and actions you can take right away.

Sign up, call-in, and join the discussion!

Please note: to join the call you must first access the platform on the right-hand column. 

If you will be viewing the live event on your smart phone or device, you will need to download the MobileMeetings APP By E-STREAM.COM, Inc. and enter the meeting number: 375191.

The Statement

To support a full creative life for all, Americans for the Arts commits to championing policies and practices of cultural equity that empower a just, inclusive, and equitable nation.

Read the full statement.

PresentersAbel Lopez (Board Chair, Americans for the Arts), Mara Walker (Chief Operating Officer, Americans for the Arts), and Clay Lord (Vice President of Local Arts Advancement, Americans for the Arts)

ModeratorBridget Woodbury (Membership Marketing Coordinator, Americans for the Arts)

§  Membership Briefing: Arts and Economic Prosperity 5
Friday, August 4 at 3:00 pm Eastern

Join us for this 30 minute, members-only call to learn more about our new Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 directly from Randy Cohen, Vice President of Research and Policy. We'll provide some top-line findings and tell you more about how your peers use this study!

Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 is Americans for the Arts' fifth study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry's impact on the economy. It documents the economic contributions of the arts in 341 diverse communities and regions across the country, representing all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Sign up, call-in, and join the discussion!

Please note: to join the call you must first access the platform on the right-hand column. 

If you will be viewing the live event on your smart phone or device, you will need to download the MobileMeetings APP By E-STREAM.COM, Inc. and enter the meeting number: 375191.

PresenterRandy Cohen (Vice President of Research and Policy, Americans for the Arts)

ModeratorBridget Woodbury (Membership Marketing Coordinator, Americans for the Arts)

Upcoming Free Webinars from Congressional Management Foundation

Mark your calendar for "The Complete Citizen-Advocate's Toolkit", the first of a four-part series presented by Brad Fitch, President of the Congressional Management Foundation in partnership with VoterVoice's 2017 Advocacy Success webinar series. Space is limited so please register ASAP!

§  The Influence Checklist: Assessing and Improving Your Advocacy Strategies
Thursday, September 21, 2017 at 2:00 pm Eastern

As online advocacy tools have grown, the diversity and sheer volume of options has created a challenge for grassroots organizers. Identifying which strategies fit an organization's needs, abilities, and culture becomes an annual puzzle. In this program, CMF will walk participants through an exercise to identify 23 tactics to build relationships between your supporters and lawmakers. The program  includes a worksheet allowing participants to assess the individual organization's value and success level for each tactic in order to create a complete advocacy strategic plan.

§  How do your advocate messages move from back office to Member's office?
Thursday, November 9, 2017 at 2:00 pm Eastern

Be one of the first to hear CMF survey results from Legislative Correspondents about how their office handles your advocacy messages. Learn what it takes to get on the mail report and how advocacy organizations can make their communication campaigns more effective


Spotlight: Waduda Muhammad


This week's Spotlight features Waduda Muhammad, board member of the Georgia Arts Network and incoming council member of the State Arts Action Network.

In 2008, Georgia's state arts funding was in jeopardy of total elimination. Waduda Muhammad was fresh out of her undergraduate studies in Art History and was serving as the Interim Director of the Galleries at Georgia State University. She said, "I remember thinking, 'How is this possible; who makes the decision to cut funding for the arts; what is the process; and why is the arts community just finding out now that the bill is on the floor to be voted on?'" She felt confused and insecure in the work that she was doing—considering that the gallery was funded 80% by state and county grants. Waduda then joined a march to the Georgia state capitol that day, made signs, and chanted for the arts to maintain its funding level. The result was an 80% cut to the overall budget. She commented, "I made it a point from that moment on to understand as much as I could about arts and cultural policy, which I soon realized, was considered arts advocacy."

The cuts in funding to the state arts council resulted in the closure of approximately 80% of the arts organizations in the City of Atlanta. Because of that, finding work in the arts and culture sector was scarce, but she was fortunate to find a fantastic non-profit arts organization to work with. Waduda has now been with Atlanta Celebrates Photography as a contractor for three years and as an employee for two years as administrative assistant. She also started a company formerly Arts Smart Trendz LLC, now Dennis Ayres Fine Arts, to contract with other non-profit arts organizations who can not afford to hire full-time employees. While news of her current project is embargoed, Waduda said, "What I can say is that myself and two other individuals are collaborating on a public art project and are the current recipients of $100,000 award to produce it over the next two years." 

She joined Georgia Arts Network's Board of Directors in 2016. She was the primary lead on coordinating Georgia's Arts Advocacy Day in Atlanta and became the State Captain for National Arts advocacy Day with Americans for the Arts in Washington, DC. 

Prior to that, she was the Interim Director of the Ernest G. Welch School of Art 7 Design Galleries at Georgia State University in Atlanta. She directed approximately 20 student, faculty, and international exhibitions. She also supervised, all interns, graduate assistants and work study students completing field experience requirements for their area of study.

One of Waduda's favorite advocacy moments was when she came to Arts Advocacy Day 2016 and met with her Members of Congress. She found the opportunity to come to Washington, D.C and communicate what Georgia arts advocates want locally very powerful. Waduda commented, "It was empowering for me because it was the first time I engaged with all of them."

While Waduda does not have a dedicated art form, she comes from a drawing and painting background—in the first grade, her drawing was published in the local newspaper. When she went to college, Waduda transitioned to study Art History and Arts Administration because she felt the need to be in a position to support and advocate for individual artists. She said, "I truly believe that the arts build communities, encourage dialogue, and should be an integral component of everyday life."



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