House Rejects Further NEA Cuts! - (July 29, 2011)

Bipartisan Effort Protects NEA from Further Cuts!

Washington, D.C. - Bipartisanship in Washington? Yes! Just yesterday, House Republicans and Democracts acted together to support funding for the arts, defeating an amendment that would have further reduced NEA funding.

  • An amendment offered by Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI) would have decreased FY12 NEA funding to $124.4 million, and was defeated yesterday by a vote of 181-240, with 55 Republicans voting in opposition to the amendment.
  • Just five months ago, when Rep. Walberg offered an amendment to decrease FY11 NEA funding to $124.4 million, the amendment passed in the House by a vote of 217-209. The ultimate FY11 bill approved by Congress contained $155 million for the NEA.


Several key bipartisan developments combined to influence the outcome of yesterday's vote. Thanks to YOUR ADVOCACY, extraordinary leadership by the Congressional Arts Caucus Co-chairs Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Todd Platts (R-PA), compelling remarks in support of the NEA on the House floor by Interior Appropriations Committee Chairman Mike Simpson (R-ID), and a White House veto threat opposing the already-lowered funding level, the NEA was spared further cuts yesterday.


The FY12 bill will soon move on to the Senate for consideration. Here are two things you can do to to help:

1. Check our pdf House Voting Record to see how your Member of Congress voted, and send a follow-up message to your Representative. We've created a voting record that charts the FY11 and FY12 votes side-by-side so that you can see which members changed their votes to support the arts. It is important that your elected officials know you have paid attention to their vote.

2. Visit with your members of Congress during the upcoming recess , and ask them to support NEA funding. The House FY12 spending bill, unamended, already included a $20 million cut to NEA funding, bringing total funding down to $135 million. The FY12 funding bill will be taken up by the Senate after House consideration is complete. The League will keep you posted on upcoming Senate action, but please start your advocacy now.


Please direct any related questions to Heather Noonan, Vice President for Advocacy, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Najean Lee, Senior Manager, Government Affairs & Education Advocacy, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The League is a member of the Performing Arts Alliance, a coalition of national performing arts service organizations dedicated to advocating for national policies that recognize, enhance, and foster the contributions the performing arts make to America