October 3, 2006

Congress has recognized the public value of performing arts organizations by addressing a significant inequity in Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) disaster relief policy.  In response to concerns raised by the performing arts community (PDF), the FY07 Department of Homeland Security (DHS) funding bill included a provision adding nonprofit performing arts facilities to the list of organizations eligible for future FEMA disaster relief.  FEMA eligibility enables organizations that are located in a Presidential-declared disaster area and own their facilities to seek reimbursement for the costs to repair facilities to their pre-disaster condition, as well as for costs associated with debris removal and emergency protective measures.  Each FEMA application is considered on a case-by-case basis.  While the new performing arts eligibility does not guarantee that each future application will be approved, it allows requests to be fairly considered. Please stay tuned – we are working with FEMA to learn more about future eligibility requirements.

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