Advocacy Alert: June 17

IMLS Funding Passes First Hurdle; Show Your Support Today! 

Earlier today, the subcommittee with jurisdiction over federal education spending—including the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)—advanced legislation setting Fiscal Year 2016 funding levels for a number of federal agencies. Despite having almost $4 billion less to spend overall than last year, the subcommittee proposed level funding of $227.9 million for IMLS. This strong showing comes on the heels of record support in Congress for the IMLS Office of Museum Services earlier this year.                     

Keep the momentum going. Register your support for IMLS museum funding today.
 
The proposal still has a long way to go and threats could arise during any stage of the process: at the full House Appropriations Committee, the Senate subcommittee, on the floor of either chamber or in end-of-the-year negotiations. The House has also not yet made clear how it would distribute that funding between the various library and museum programs within IMLS.
 
“In a proposal that cuts almost $4 billion from labor, health, and education programs, it’s very encouraging to see IMLS fare comparatively well,” said Alliance President and CEO Laura Lott. “Clearly, the museum field’s advocacy message is being heard, but we need to keep up the drumbeat of support for the agency’s crucial role in helping museums care for their collections, reach their communities and stimulate their local economies.”
 
P.S. Since last week’s advocacy alert—and the roughly 1,200 legislator contacts you made as a result—both the full House Appropriations Committee and the Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittee have advanced legislation that would maintain funding at $146 million each for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, despite overall cuts in those bills. Thank you museum advocates!