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Established by Congress in 1965, the NEA is the independent federal agency who’s funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America.
The reach of the National Endowment for the Arts is truly national—we directly fund projects in every state, investing in communities large and small, urban and rural, coastal and land-locked. To extend our impact, 40 percent of all NEA grantmaking funds go directly to state arts agencies (SAAs) and regional arts organizations. States must match the NEA funding they receive, significantly increasing the available amount they have to distribute to exceptional nonprofit arts organizations and programs throughout their state. More than 4,500 communities have been served each year by our state and regional partners with the support of NEA funding.
In March of 2017, Trump proposed the elimination of the Arts and Humanities Endowments. Basically the FY 2018 budget blueprint proposes the elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts. NEA reports that it will “continue to operate as usual and will do so until a new budget is enacted by Congress. Our FY 2017 operations remain unchanged. We continue to make FY 2017 grant awards and will continue to honor all obligated grant funds made to date.”
This supposed budget proposal, while being reported as a “worst-case scenario” by the administration, has many artists, museums, and cultural organizations nationwide reviewing their futures. Smaller groups that currently struggle even with the support of NEA may be doomed if these cuts come to fruition.
To learn more about this organization, visit arts.gov.