Public Issues

Legislative Updates from the Utah Cultural Alliance

First, on the local level (text courtesy of UCA member organization Utah Heritage Foundation):

Preservation moratorium proposed

Senate Bill 243, Historic Areas or Sites Amendment, was released with text on Monday, February 7, 2011.  In brief, the bill proposes a year-long moratorium on designations, expenditures, and development agreements that involve historic structures at the city and county level beginning on May 10, 2011.

Utah Heritage Foundation believes that this bill has the ability to stop or seriously curtail preservation activities statewide at the local level – just at the time when policies are needed that encourage economic development through historic preservation and boost our economy.

Senate Bill 243 – Historic Areas or Sites Amendment, read the bills text and status here: http://le.utah.gov/~2011/htmdoc/sbillhtm/sb0243.htm

Today’s Senate Workforce and Services Committee meeting was canceled, however click here to contact members of the committee to express your support for Heritage and to encourage them to vote against the bill in committee.

Second, also on the State Level:

The revised budget numbers for the state of Utah should be announced next week or early the week following. Continue to keep up pressure on members of the Business, Economic Development, and Labor (BEDL) Appropriations Sub-committee to add back funds to a number of cuts that would impact the cultural community. A list of cuts and a sample email to send are located here. Contact information is located here.

POPS and iSee funding will remain at a static level. The Beverly Taylor Sorenson Arts Learning Program is receiving one-time funding at $658,000. If you would like to thank the Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee for keepting POPS and iSee funding at current levels, as well as encourage them to fund the Arts Learning Program next year, click here for contact information.

Members of the Utah Cultural Alliance are meeting with a number of members of the BEDL sub-committee on Monday and throughout this week. If you would like us to personally share your messages, send us an email at staff@utahculturalalliance.org.


Third, on the Federal level, NEA, NEH, and Corp for Public Broadcasting Funding is at Risk as Early as next week. Additional cuts (some backed by the President) were announced this morning.

Next week, the U.S. House of Representatives will bring to the House floor, a Continuing Resolution (CR) appropriations package that proposes to cut dozens of federal agencies and programs for the balance of the current 2011 fiscal year (March 5 through September 30).  Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee revealed details of what some of the cuts will be in this CR package and they include cutting the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) budget to $155 million this year. UPDATE: this number has been cut an additional $10 Million bringing the total cut to $21.3 Million. This cut is apparently backed by the President. That’s a substantial cut from its currently funded level of $167.5 million. This resolution would also zero out funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.  National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is currently looking at a $12.2 million cut making their budget go from $167 million (the FY 2010 enacted level) to $155 million. It is likely that additional NEH cuts will be announced this week. It is also possible that some legislators might propose zeroing out all cultural entities. Please note that both Representatives Bishop and Chaffetz belong to the Republican Study Committee that launched this initative.

More info about NEA cuts | Capwiz email to sent to Representatives about NEA

More info about Corp. for Public Broadcasting: 6th Bill Proposed to Cut CPR Funding | Public Broadcasting Zeroed Out (both links also include capwiz emails to send to your Representatives)

More info about NEH cutsCapwiz email to send to Representative about NEH

UTAH’S ART MAGAZINE SINCE 2001, 15 Bytes is published by Artists of Utah, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah.

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