[Vision2020] Arts cuts a huge mistake

Moscow Cares moscowcares at moscow.com
Thu Mar 30 00:45:17 PDT 2017

Courtesy of today's (March 30, 2017 Moscow-Pullman Daily News with appreciation to Joann Muneta.

Letter: Arts cuts a huge mistake

President Donald Trump's budget proposal contains many drastic and irresponsible cuts that would make the USA a sadder and poorer country. Abolishing the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting will eliminate thousands of organizations and projects that bring enrichment, joy, education, inspiration and economic benefits to our communities, youth and rural regions.

For more than 50 years, the NEA has expanded access to the arts for all Americans, awarding grants in every congressional district. Of the NEA's grantmaking budget, 40 percent is awarded to the states, reaching millions more people in thousands of communities.

On the Palouse, organizations such as Festival Dance, the University of Idaho Auditorium Series, the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival, the Moscow Arts Commission, the Pritchard Art Gallery, Washington State University Performing Arts, area schools and many individual artists have benefited from grants directly or indirectly from NEA funding. A grant from the NEA to Festival Dance this year is helping fund free arts programs to 2,000 area students in Moscow, Pullman, Potlatch, Genesee, Troy, Palouse, Garfield, Colton and Lapwai.

Cutting the NEA would be a huge mistake. The arts have been shown to be an economic engine providing jobs, encouraging commerce, increasing tourism and building communities. The NEA's $148 million budget represents only 0.025 percent of federal non-defense discretionary spending, yet it generates more than $600 million annually in additional matching funds and helps to shape a $704 billion arts and culture industry that represents 4.2 percent of the nation's GDP and supports 4.8 million jobs. Funding these agencies has been supported by presidents and Congress from both parties. Join me in asking our representatives in Washington. D.C., to continue vital funding to these programs that benefit us all.

Joann Muneta


Seeya 'round town, Moscow, because . . .

"Moscow Cares"
Tom Hansen
Moscow, Idaho
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