Arts and Recovery: Contact Congress Today
August 30, 2021
Your voice has made a real difference as Congress shapes relief and recovery resources, and it’s time to be heard once again! In the coming weeks, Congress will finalize the contents of massive legislative vehicles intended to build the nation’s infrastructure and provide resources to support recovery amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This legislation is being called a once-in-a-generation investment in U.S. infrastructure and growth. We strongly encourage you to participate in this orchestra advocacy campaign, in partnership with the wider arts and nonprofit networks. The League’s Recovery Issue Center includes a full slate of policy priorities being advanced, including support for our nation’s cultural agencies, nonprofit policies, and the ongoing need for relief funding. Here are just a few of the newest highlights:
- Retain and Expand the Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC): As we reported in our recent policy round-up, part of the negotiating that happened as the larger bills come together – in this case the infrastructure bill that was passed by the Senate – involved a measure to repeal the 2021 fourth quarter access to the ERTC. Many orchestras have been counting on access to the ERTC through the end of this year to support their hiring and program commitments. The League has been partnering with the broader arts and nonprofit sectors to advocate to Congress to maintain and expand access to the ERTC. Find background information regarding how to access the ERTC in our federal COVID-19 Resource Center, and make use of our ERTC advocacy talking points when weighing in with Congress.
- Invest in America’s Arts Infrastructure: The League of American Orchestras, together with more than 60 organizations, has advanced Rebuilding America’s Arts Infrastructure (PDF) – a collection of federal-level recommendations to address short- and long-term infrastructure needs while centering racial, economic, and climate equity and utilizing the arts as a vital part of solving for myriad challenges. Recommendations run the gamut from modest to more visionary, and we invite orchestra advocates to urge their elected officials to consider the arts as a true partner when it comes to improving our country’s infrastructure for all.
- Support the Creative Economy: A bipartisan House bill has been recently introduced, with the endorsement of more than 150 organizations, including the League. The Creative Economy Revitalization Act of 2021 (H.R. 5019), introduced by Teresa Leger Fernández (D-NM) and Jay Obernolte (R-CA), seeks to revamp the creative economy through the creation of a workforce grants program to employ artists and writers to create publicly available art. Such a program would be a significant way of incubating support and establishing levers that could meaningfully advance the employment of creative workers and the creation of more public art.
These are a few of the most timely issues which could use a boost from you! Please take a few moments to review our campaign, identify the issues that resonate most for your orchestra and its community, contact your members of Congress, and urge your friends and colleagues to do the same.