Arts and Humanities: Background on Funding

Publication Date: February 2006

Publisher: Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service


Research Area: Culture and religion



Funding for the arts and humanities is a perennial issue in Congress. Although arts funding represents less than 1% of the Bush Administration's FY2007 total estimated budget authority, Congress continues to address the concern of whether federal funding is crucial to sustain arts institutions. The majority of federally funded arts and humanities programs are contained in the Department of Interior and Related Agencies appropriations bill. The Interior appropriations provide funding for the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities, including the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The Office of Museum Services, within the Institute of Museum and Library Services, is now under the jurisdiction of the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education and Related Agencies appropriations. The FY2006 final Interior appropriations law (H.R. 2361, P.L. 109-54) provided $124.40 million for NEA and $140.95 million for NEH (both figures including rescissions.) The Bush Administration's FY2007 budget would provide $124.41 million for the NEA and $140.955 million for NEH, which are very similar numbers to the final FY2006 appropriation.