A report from the National Center for Arts Research examines the economic impacts of nonprofit arts and culture organizations across the country. The report also illustrates the wide geographic distribution of these organizations, stating that “arts and cultural organizations are where people live, not just in big cities or on the coasts.”
A recent article on Quartz offers a wealth of data showing how arts impact the economy, public health, and education in America:
The numbers pointing to the importance of the arts in America are astounding. For example, from 2006 to 2013, the arts industry consistently outperformed the overall US balance of trade, increasing the national surplus ten times over. Dance is the leisure activity most likely to help delay Alzheimer’s onset for at-risk adults. Children involved in community-based arts programs are four times more likely to be top academic performers. Facts like these show that keeping the NEA, the NEH, and the CPB in America’s cultural inventory isn’t just a matter of supporting creative expression—it’s an issue of economics, public health, and education, too.
In a recent article on The Hill, country commissioner and arts leader Natalia D. Macker writes about how funding from the National Endowment for the arts supports rural areas like Wyoming:
In a rural state like Wyoming, where I serve as a local elected official and the artistic director of a nonprofit theater, arts funding is critical to ensuring that many underserved populations have access to the arts at all.
While great art will always be available to those who live in our nation’s big cities, for rural communities this is far from a given.
That’s why I was concerned to learn that President Trump’s proposed budget for next year calls for the elimination of a primary funding source for rural arts programs: the National Endowment for the Arts.
From Education Week:
President Donald Trump’s full budget proposal for the U.S. Department of Education, released on Tuesday, includes big shifts in funding priorities and makes cuts to spending for teacher development, after-school enrichment, and career and technical education, while ramping up investments in school choice.
A $1 billion cash infusion for Title I’s services for needy children would be earmarked as grants designed to promote public school choice, instead of going out by traditional formulas to school districts.
President Trump has released the full version of his 2018 budget plan. From artnet News:
Donald Trump’s much-anticipated 2018 budget proposes steep cuts to domestic programs—including the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
According to a CNN report, which cites an outline of the budget released last night, the proposal “doubles down on some largely symbolic cuts” first rolled out by the administration earlier this year, including the elimination of the NEA. As usual, however, Congress remains intent on writing its own budget, so Trump’s plan is unlikely to go far on Capitol Hill. Trump’s proposal, CNN notes, is more a statement of policy than a practical budget that is expected to be adopted in full.
UPDATE: Americans for the Arts has provided a breakdown of arts-related spending in the proposal. Continue reading President Trump’s Newly-Released 2018 Budget ‘Doubles Down’ on Calls To Eliminate the NEA
William D. Adams, the tenth chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities, announced today his resignation from the agency, effective Tuesday, May 23, 2017. In a brief statement to staff, Adams expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to serve as the chairman of NEH and his admiration for the work of the agency. Deputy Chair Margaret Plympton will serve as acting chair.
On June 14, the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP) will host a webinar highlighting what national grantmakers can learn from ALAANA-led social movements and philanthropic institutions in the South:
[The South has] a vibrant history of successful movements for racial and social justice, yet grassroots Southern leaders are often overlooked by philanthropy and lack funding to pursue their own agendas.
The South is already home to a strong ecosystem of people-of-color (POC)-led philanthropic institutions that can help drive resources for racial and social justice. This webinar will explore the crucial role of POC-led philanthropy in the South, with an emphasis on the powerful potential for significant impact not only in the Southern region, but nationally.
From the Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF):
WESTAF has expanded its advocacy work on behalf of the National Endowment for the Arts. Recently, three contractors were hired to focus exclusively on this project and to work closely with our regional network of advocates. WESTAF has also created an NEA Advocacy center with the latest updates on the NEA FY18 budget as well as an Advocacy Toolkit that contains step-by-step guides for calling, writing, and meeting with members of Congress. Advocates can also find talking points there to use when engaging with members of Congress or their staff
From Carolinia A. Miranda, writing for the Los Angeles Times:
The National Assembly of State Arts Agencies has released an updated and expanded edition of Why Should Government Support the Arts? its policy brief detailing the economic, health, educational, civic, community and cultural benefits of public arts funding. In clear language — and with numerous links to fresh research — the paper debunks myths and misconceptions about government arts funding.