What is Advocacy?
The Vermont Arts Council defines advocacy as a political process in which individuals or groups of people influence public policy and resource allocation decisions at national, state, and local levels.
Government decision makers deserve to be well informed as they craft policy and legislation. It is fundamentally useful to speak about the real value that arts and culture provide in our communities and in Vermont.
make a difference
A single opinion has proven to have considerable strength, especially when expressed collectively. There are a number of avenues for effective advocacy.
- Use the Council’s Action Center to stay informed
- Speak directly with elected officials in public meetings or in person
- In public forums, ask candidates what their position is for supporting arts and culture
- Send personal letters or email to your elected officials
- Invite your elected officials to arts events in your community
2017 Advocacy Agenda
- Increase the Arts Council appropriation by $500,000. As per regular budget protocol, the Arts Council presented a proposal to the budget office and the outgoing Governor’s office. The Council will also present this budget to the new Governor’s office and the legislature.
- Insert the arts and creativity into Act 186 (the 2014 act relating to reporting on population-level outcomes and indicators and on program-level performance measures). The Council will define measurable ways in which the arts, culture, and creativity contribute to Vermont’s highest-level outcomes.
- Ensure the arts are a part of every Vermont student's education. The Council is working with the Department of Education in the context of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and Vermont Act 77.
- increased cognizance of the arts, culture, and creativity in Vermont’s identity
- incentives for small creative businesses
- expansion of legislative commitments to the arts, drawing from ideas of model states
Sometimes an update, sometimes a call to action. Always information about the Council's position during the legislative session.
- October 2017 update FY2018 federal budget not yet passed | doubling standard deduction threatens nonprofit giving | first drafts of state budget begin | Creative Network Summit approaching
- September 2017 update NEA recommended budget remains $145m | charitable giving deduction scrutinized, Giving100 Campaign developed | Creative network Summit date November 8 and 9
- August 2017 update NEA recommended budget remains $145m | charitable contributions and Artist-Museum Partnership Act may be included in tax reform | Karen Mittelman to lead Arts Council | advocating locally
- July 2017 update $5M cut to NEA and NEH recommended | Summit November 8 and 9 | advocating in summer months
- June 2017 update President's budget calls for deep cuts to NEA | Leahy introduces Artist-Museum Partnership Act | Governor Scott vetoes state budget | advocating in summer months
- May 2017 update federal budget increases NEA funding | state appropriation level funded | Results-Based Accountability included in Council's strategic plan | advocating outside the legislative session
- April 2017 update federal budget still hanging | state budget through senate committee, Alex Aldrich stepping down | national arts advocacy day in review | what you can do
- March 2017 update federal budget news approaching | state budget news approaching | arts advocacy day approaching | what you can do
- February 2017 update status of funding for NEA still in question | national arts advocacy day coming | state arts advocacy day review | what you can do
- January 2017 update elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts proposed | Vermont Arts Advocacy Day is February 3, 2017 | Council begins testimony and legislative meetings
- January 2017 welcome 2017 agenda | actions | advocacy tools available | national update | Vermont Arts Advocacy Day | National Arts Advocacy Day
- view archive
- Why Government Should Support the Arts, State Policy Brief from the National Association of State Arts Agencies
- Americans for the Arts: Statement on Arts, Jobs, and the Economy
- Americans for the Arts: Two Dozen Senators Send President Trump NEA/NEH Letter
- CultureGrrl: Never-Ending Battle: Mobilizing (once again) to Save the National Endowments for the Arts & Humanities
- Literary Hub: The Original NEA Legislation is Actually a Great Work of American Literature
- Los Angeles Times: U.S. has funded artists and intellectuals for half a century, but it's a perennial fight
- New York Times: The Folly of Abolishing the N.E.A.
- The Vermont Creative Sector Economy (on Vermont Creative Network site) August, 2016
- Artists, Artisans, and Entrepreneurs: Creative Economy of the East Central Vermont Region (on Vermont Creative Network site) | Executive Summary (on Vermont Creative Network site) 2016
- The Economic Footprint of the Arts in Vermont, updated July, 2014
- The Economic Footprint of the Arts in Vermont November, 2010