MASSCreative Advocacy Helps NEA and NEH Win Budget Increases


Overriding President Trump’s proposal to eliminate the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), Congress passed the finalized 2018 federal funding bill on March 23 that includes $3 million increases to both organizations. These increases will fund each agency at $152.8 million through September 30, 2018.

This victory came on the heels of our work to Save the NEA and NEH and Americans for the Arts’ Annual Arts Advocacy Day. In March, Program Advocate, Emily Ruddock traveled to the nation’s capital to join passionate arts advocates from across the country to share why the arts matter with their elected officials. Emily was joined by Massachusetts arts advocates  Nick Bazo of The Theater Offensive, Robin Hayden of Country Dance and Song Society, Mark Murphy of The American Academy of Arts & Sciences, Rob Southworth of School Works Lab, and Ann Wicks of New England Foundation for the Arts. The MA team met with the offices of all 11 Massachusetts Members of Congress, including both Senators Markey and Warren. During each office visit, the team delivered thousands of signatures from MA residents on our Save the NEA/NEH petition and shared stories of impact from young people from our #ArtsMatter poster project.  

Win one congressional win under our belt, another fight looms for next year’s 2019 budget, as President Trump’s FY19 budget also proposed to eliminate the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

“Shutting down these arts and humanities agencies isn’t about balancing the budget or cutting excess spending. These cuts are a direct attack on our values and all that arts, culture, and the humanities bring to building healthy, vibrant, and equitable communities across the country,” said MASSCreative Program Advocate Emily Ruddock.

MASSCreative will continue to follow the federal budget process and provide additional opportunities for members  to show the MA Congressional delegation that arts and culture are public good worthy of public investment.

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