Blogs

President Trump’s Newly-Released 2018 Budget Calls To Eliminate the NEA

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.

NEH Chairman William D. Adams Announces Resignation

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.

Video: Steven Tepper on the Power of Arts in a Changing World

Steven J. Tepper, dean of the Herberger Institute for Design in the Arts at Arizona State University, recently presented the keynote address at ArtsFund's 29th Annual Celebration of the Arts Luncheon. His speech titled “Creativity, Education, and Work in the 21st Century” makes the case for the vital necessity of creativity in today’s society as we face unprecedented rates of growth and change. Tepper was also a keynote presenter at the 2014 GIA Conference in Houston, Texas.

WESTAF Boosts Advocacy Efforts to Support NEA

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 enter 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.
Could $499,000 in Grants That Help Our Soldiers Be One Reason Congress Spared the NEA?

From Carolinia A. Miranda, writing for the Los Angeles Times:

After President Trump threatened to eliminate the [National Endowment for the Arts], Congress approved a spending bill that not only funds the NEA for another year, but increased its $148 million annual budget by nearly $2 million. Lost in much of the acrimonious debate over whether the NEA should live or die is the organization’s support for cultural programs that cater to military veterans, active duty service members and their families.
Over 50 Percent of Americans Live and Work in Suburbs. Are 50 Percent of Them Arts Leaders?

Joshua Heim, Arts Program Manager for the city of Bellevue, Washington, posts to AFTA’s Artsblog:

The lack of suburban arts leaders shouldn’t come as a surprise. From 2011-2015, Barry Hessenius published an annual list of the Fifty Most Powerful and Influential People in the Nonprofit Arts. Of the 142 individuals included on that list over the years, just three people came from suburbs. If you’re anxious about the steady decline in arts participation and interested in a fully integrated creative situation, then this is a problem. Because over half of Americans live and work in suburbs.
NYC Reconsidering Arts Funding Formula to More Equitably Support Smaller ‘Marginalized’ Groups

From The New York Times:

Mayor Bill de Blasio and his lieutenants are deep into a re-examination of New York City’s $178 million arts budget and other cultural resources to try and give a higher profile — and perhaps more taxpayer money — to smaller institutions in disadvantaged neighborhoods.

The proposed new approach, with an emphasis on greater equity, has some major arts organizations fearful they will end up with less of the municipal-funding pie, while more marginalized groups are hopeful about finally receiving more.

Trump Signs FY2017 Spending Bill, Includes Additional NEA and NEH Funding

Congress has passed, and President Trump has signed into law, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2017, which funds the federal government through the end of the current fiscal year. Included in the spending bill is increased funding for the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities, an additional $2 million more than the 2016 budget for each agency.

From The Washington Post:

Republicans and Democrats who negotiated the measure Trump signed Friday had successfully defended other accounts Trump had targeted for spending cuts, such as foreign aid, the Environmental Protection Agency, support for the arts and economic development grants, among others.
Executive Director Eloise Damrosch of Portland's Regional Arts & Culture Council to Retire

Eloise Damrosch, the executive director of the Regional Arts & Culture Council (Portland, OR), has announced her plans to retire on June 30, 2017. Damrosch has earned a local and national reputation as a respected arts administrator while helping create one of the best-known public art collections in the country.

New from the GIA Reader: How to Invest in the Arts without Buying a Picasso

In an article in the latest issue of the GIA Reader, “How to Invest in the Arts without Buying a Picasso,” Laura Callanan of Upstart Co-Lab writes about the emergence of impact investing and how it can support the creative economy.