The House Appropriations Committee has approved its interior bill for the 2018 fiscal year, which calls for $145 million to be made available to the National Endowment for the Arts. While a decrease from the $150 million the NEA received in 2017, the allotment would ensure the federal agency’s survival in the face of a proposed elimination under the Trump administration.
The appropriation would provide expenses for grants and administration maintenance to carry out the NEA, as detailed in the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965. A separate allotment of $145 million would also go to the National Endowment for the Humanities.
The House of Representatives is expected to rule on the bill’s approval in the coming weeks, at which time it will be taken to the Senate, then Trump.
The president’s intentions to slash the NEA were confirmed in March and echoed in the 2018 budget plan released in May. Since then, arts advocates and leaders have urged Americans to join in protecting the agency, which provides funding to arts organizations in virtually every U.S. jurisdiction—which in turn contribute upwards of $700 billion to the economy.
The NEA recently announced its second round of funding in the 2017 fiscal year, comprising 1,029 grants totaling $84.06 million.
For more information on the National Endowment for the Arts, including a script to use when calling representatives to voice support, visit Playbill.com/NEA.