American Alliance of Museums Advocacy Alerts
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ACTION: Ask your U.S. Representative and Senators to extend the Save Our Stages funds
Thank Senators Sinema and Kelly for signing-on to the Save Our Stages Extension bill (S 2889) and ask them and your U.S. Representative to sign-on to the House version of the bill (HR 5429). This bill will extend the project period for all Shuttered Venue Operator Grantees to use their funds to pay for allowable expenditures incurred between March 1, 2020 through March 11, 2023.
Please contact your legislators using the Americans for the Arts automated letter. [November]
ACTION: Ask Your Legislators to Support the Emergency Charitable Stimulus Proposal
Approximately $1.2 trillion in charitable dollars is currently being held by charitable foundations and donor-advised accounts (DAFs). Many of these groups are only donating the 5% of their assets currently required by U.S. law, despite the overwhelming need by the nonprofit organizations that rely on these funds. A recent report from the Center for Disaster Philanthropy found that foundations gave out under $5 billion in COVID-specific grants last year, less than one half of one percent of their total assets.
Adding an Emergency Charitable Stimulus proposal to the next stimulus bill would double the required payout to 10% of the foundation’s assets for three years, to allow time for full deployment of the COVID vaccine and economic recovery. It would also extend this requirement to it to donor-advised funds, which currently have no payout requirement at all.
The Institute for Policy Studies has provided a letter template you can send to your U.S. Representative and Senators. [November]
ACTION: Ask House and Senate leaders to strengthen the Historic Tax Credit
Ask House and Senate leaders to add provisions to strengthen the historic tax credit back into the Build Back Better legislation. For more than three decades the federal historic tax credit has supported the preservation of our most important historic buildings, supported community redevelopment, promoted job creation, and offered climate change solutions through building reuse. Enhancing the historic tax credit, as envisioned by the Historic Tax Credit Growth and Opportunity Act (H.R. 2294 / S. 2266), will build on this success well into the future. [November]
Use this letter template from the National Trust for Historic Preservation to write to these leaders.
ACTION: Ask your legislators to retain the Employee Retention Tax Credit for Nonprofits
The Employee Retention Tax Credit is an important refundable payroll tax credit for nonprofits, including museums, and small businesses, designed to provide a financial incentive to keep employees on the payroll and continue to deliver important services despite the continuing hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Now it is being proposed to eliminate the ERTC for the 4th quarter, even after nonprofits have planned for the availability of those funds.
Use the American Alliance of Museums template to contact your U.S. Representative and Senators and ask them to retain the ERTC for nonprofits. [November]
ACTION: Ask your legislators to support the Arts Education for All Act
The Arts Education for All Act, introduced by U.S. Representative Suzanne Bonamici, will support and encourage the offering of arts education and programming experiences to Americans including our youngest learners, K-12 students, and youth impacted by the juvenile justice system. Crucially, the bill will also include provisions that would allow for rigorous arts and arts education research to be carried out, to further inform how elementary and secondary education in our country is improved.
Americans for the Arts has created a customizable email that will only take a few minutes to send your U.S. Representatives. [September]
ACTION: Ask your U.S. Representative and Senators to Include Museums in Reconciliation/Infrastructure Legislation
We need to ensure museums are eligible for funding in upcoming reconciliation/infrastructure legislation for projects that include Buildings: New construction and upgrades to existing and historic structures including for energy efficiency, clean energy generation research and demonstration projects, retrofitting and retro-commissioning, and improvement funding; Climate Resilience: To prepare for increasingly frequent extreme weather including coastal erosion, sea level rise, flooding, and fires; Water and Electricity: Ensure all museums have access to safe and clean water infrastructure as well as a modernized electric grid; Broadband: Designate museums as hubs for high-speed internet in low-income and rural areas.
The Museum Association of Arizona has already signed on to a joint letter to Congressional leadership. Now you can send the automated letter prepared by American Alliance of Museums to your Representative and Senators. [September]
ACTION: Ask your U.S. Senators to Approve the Historic Increase for OMS
Thanks to the continuing efforts of museum advocates across the country, the House of Representatives approved a proposed $14 million (35%) funding increase for Office of Museum Services (OMS) programs at the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)
However, the appropriations process has a way to go, and the Senate has yet to act with the beginning of FY 2022 looming October 1. A temporary stop-gap funding measure is expected while Congress finalizes the final spending package during the coming weeks.
Please contact your Senators using the American Alliance of Museums automated letter and ask them to support this increase for OMS. [September]
ACTION: Ask your U.S. Representative and Senators to join the Congressional America 250 Caucus
The Congressional America 250 is a forum for lawmakers to share their interest in planning for the country’s 250th anniversary. The bipartisan caucus will be a valuable resource for lawmakers and Congressional staff over the next few years. [March]
Arizona Citizens for the Arts Advocacy Network
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UPDATE: Funding for the State Parks Heritage Fund
The state budget for Fiscal Year 2022 includes $5 million to fund the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund thanks to Senator T.J. Shope of Coolidge and Representative Joanne Osborne of Goodyear.
ACTION: If you are in Senator Shope or Representative Osborne's district please thank them for their support. [July]
UPDATE: Funding for the Arizona Arts Commission
The Fiscal Year 2022 budget does not include state funding for the Arizona Commission of the Arts, but an announcement in the coming days which will appropriate federal ARP dollars to the commission. [July]