Shutdown ends, Government Reopens

October 17, 2013

Government Reopens for Business
With the looming threat of the U.S. defaulting on its debt obligations, both chambers of Congress passed a Senate proposal to end what has been a 16-day shutdown of the federal government, essentially buying more time to resolve deep divides over spending and policy priorities. The deal reopens the government through January 15 and lifts the debt ceiling through February 7, meanwhile instructing Congress to come to an agreement on long-term FY14 spending by mid-December. All eyes have been on the deal-making process, but thorny budget negotiations are far from over and vast differences remain regarding spending caps and cuts. There is a great deal of advocacy to be done before the end of this year, and the issue areas that will need the most immediate support of orchestra advocates are funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, support for arts education, and the status of charitable giving incentives, as Congress considers revenue and spending priorities. The League represents orchestras on the Hill and will keep you informed of ongoing opportunities to weigh in with your elected officials.

Happy Birthday to Artists from Abroad!
Ten years ago, the League’s Artists from Abroad resource was re-launched as a website, continuously updated with the latest tips for navigating the visa and tax requirements for international guest artists. In the past year alone, visitors have come to the website from more than 150 countries, and the site is used by U.S. organizations nationwide to support international cultural activity. Does your orchestra engage international artists? If so, visit artistsfromabroad.org, and also remember that your League membership includes one-on-one visa assistance from the League’s Washington, D.C. office, where we can answer questions about the latest policy changes, forms, fees, and provide helpful tips and support for engaging international guest artists for performances in the United States. Bookmark the site and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with any related questions!

October is Arts and Humanities Month
Arts and Humanities Month is celebrated every October, and in an official proclamation, President Obama declared: “Throughout our history, America has advanced not only because of our people's will or our leaders' vision, but also because of paintings and poems, stories and songs, dramas and dances. These works open our minds and nourish our souls, helping us understand what it means to be human and what it means to be American.” Please feel welcome to share via the League’s Facebook page the ways in which your orchestra is celebrating the capacity of the arts and helping to nurture and inspire citizens of all ages.