Power of Culture Blog
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On Thursday the state House of Representatives approved a budget plan for the next fiscal year that calls for investing $16.6 million in the arts, humanities, and sciences through the Mass Cultural Council. The House proposal would add $533,000 for arts and cultural funding in Fiscal Year 2020, which begins July 1.
Mass Cultural Council and its allies seek $18 million in state support in FY20 so the agency can continue to reinvest in nonprofits, artists, schools, and communities. The Senate takes up the FY20 budget in May, so the Council will work with MASSCreative, Mass Humanities, Mass Artists Leaders Coalition, and advocates statewide to make that case in the coming weeks.
“We appreciate the vote of confidence from the House,” said Anita Walker, Mass Cultural Council Executive Director. “Still, we know that there is so much more good work happening in the cultural sector across the Commonwealth that can benefit from public support. We need all our voices to ask their Senators to support arts and culture at $18 million so more of our residents can benefit from that work.”
Mass Cultural Council has an updated case statement detailing the many public benefits of support for the arts, humanities, and sciences. And new data from the National Endowment for the Arts reaffirms that the cultural sector remains a vital and growing part of our economy.
The House budget is one key step in the annual state budget process. The Senate Ways & Means Committee will release its own budget proposal in mid-May, and the full Senate will then debate that plan and amendments to it. The House and the Senate must then agree on a final tax and spending plan before sending it back to the Governor, who may veto or approve the budget and/or specific line items.