Wednesday, July 1, 2009

CRAFTIVISM: Show Support for Much Needed State Arts Funding!

We've got an update to Tam's (of BarkerBell Herbs and Heirlooms) eloquent plea for advocacy for saving the Arts in PA! Some hopeful news on the NEA, but your support is still hugely important. Please act now, and spread the word- there is so much at stake!

The past few years have seen increasing declines in arts funding and arts-friendly public policies throughout the U.S. (Arts Action Fund). Arts funding impacts arts programs in schools (including K-12), the performing arts, arts organizations and individual artists, and the richness and diversity of our national culture and heritage. Additionally, The Arts generates billions of dollars in economic activity and federal tax dollars from income every year, not to mention millions of jobs (American Arts Alliance), the reduction of which will further tax our teetering economy! On the national front, recent news has been hopeful as the U.S. House of Representatives approved an increase in National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) by $15M (Americans for the Arts)! However, the Senate must be convinced to match this funding level, making public support and advocacy still hugely important.


Please visit Americans for the Arts E-Advocacy Center and write to your Senators to urge them to support the NEA funding increase, and join the Arts Action Fund (it's free)! Spread the word about this important issue to everyone you know. Your action is critical!

Each year, 40 percent of the NEA's program dollars go to state arts agencies to help maintain the stability of arts funding, policy, infrastructure, and access. BUT, this is conditional on each state appropriating its own funding for the arts, making the situation in Pennsylvania particularly dire. In May, the State Senate passed a budget bill that would eliminate all arts and culture grants in the state through the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA) and the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) from the PA State budget (Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council) for FY 09-10! While the PA House of Representatives Appropriations Committee voted down that Senate bill in June, we're now awaiting the House's own budget bill (Citizens for the Arts in PA). It is essential that PA voters let the House know loudly and clearly that funding for arts and cluture grants must be budgeted for!

Sign this
petition. Join the "Save the Arts in PA" Facebook cause or follow the cause on Twitter. If possible, attend the "Save the Arts in PA Rally" on July 14th (see above). Tell everyone you know about what's happening, and ask for their help to stop it! And please, contact your Senators and representatives in the House to urge them to support state arts funding!

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