Hi… I sent this letter off tonight to Lloyd Doggett, Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn. Please help support the arts; see
the info at the bottom and write to your own officials and ask for support, too….every bit counts!
Sara Hickman/Artist, Musician, Mom
3005 S. lamar D-109 #412
Austin, TX 78704
January 27, 2009
The Honorable Lloyd Doggett
House of Representatives
201 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515-4325
Re: Please Help Arts in the National Economic Recovery Plan
Dear Representative Doggett:
As Congress considers the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan, I hope they will include the arts and culture
sector. It is thoughtful economic policy to invest in our nation’s arts infrastructure.
As an artist, musician, and mother of two, I urge you to read on and consider my request.
Please help provide a $50 million investment to the National Endowment for the Arts which will provide critical funding
to save 14,422 jobs from being lost in the U.S. economy. This is based on the ability of the NEA to leverage $7 in additional
support through local, state and private donations, for every $1 in NEA support.
Arts organizations employ performers and curators, but also employ accountants, designers, plumbers, union workers and
engineers. In fact, there are more full-time jobs supported by the nonprofit arts than are in accounting, public safety officers,
even lawyers and just slightly fewer than elementary school teachers.
There are approximately 100,000 nonprofit arts organizations, which spend $63.1 billion annually. Without an economic
stimulus for the nonprofit arts industry, experts expect about 10% of these organizations (ranging from large arts
institutions like museums and orchestras to small community-based organizations in suburban, urban and rural areas)
to shut their doors in 2009 – a loss of 260,000 jobs.
I’m sure you are going to receive a lot of these letters, with even more information, but I wanted to personalize this letter and tell you how
much arts funding affects my livelihood, and without crucial funding and support, I lose seasonal jobs, as do many of my friends who are
dancers, musicians, visual artists, poets and writers.
The economy is so strained already, but by keeping the arts vital, and providing ongoing funding, the economy is
strengthened within communities. People need the arts, not only for jobs, but for relief from stress, as a reminder
of how important, and crucial it is, to be engaged in the creative spirit, muse and wonder.
Thank you for supporting America and her arts communities.
Sara Hickman/Artist, Musician, Mom/Austin, TX
January 27, 2009
The legislative action surrounding jobs funding for the arts in the Economic Recovery Package in Congress
is picking up speed, and we need you to take action! Americans for the Arts has been working with Congressional
leaders to build support for this emergency funding for local and state arts organizations to prevent job losses during this recession.
As you recall, last week the House Appropriations Committee approved a plan that included $50 million in supplemental
grants funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, and a number of other provisions that can benefit the arts.
Starting tonight, and continuing tomorrow, the House will be considering the recovery legislation on the floor, and a
number of votes are expected.
The Senate will be starting their debate on the bill on Friday and continuing through next week. While the Senate Appropriations
Committee did not include an arts jobs funding provision in their version of the bill, advocates still have several opportunities
over the next few days to change the final outcome. Amendments could be made to the Senate bill or the House arts funding
provision itself could prevail in the final House/Senate conference bill.
Please take two minutes to take action and ask your Member of Congress and Senators to support the arts in this legislation.
Americans for the Arts has supplied you with fresh research and key quotes that support this funding — your help in
communicating this information to your Member of Congress is critical.
Thank you for your support of the arts!