National Assembly of State Arts Agencies' NASAA Advocate

National Assembly of State Arts Agencies' NASAA Advocate

Legislative appropriations for state and jurisdictional arts agencies have dropped for the second year in a row after a decade of steady growth, according to the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies. The group's survey of fifty-six arts agencies reveals that appropriations across all fifty states declined to $354.9 million in fiscal year 2003 from $408.6 million a year earlier, making it doubly important that arts agencies work hard to encourage politicians to support the arts. To that end, the latest NASAA Advocate, a publication devoted to building legislative support for the arts, provides models and strategies for cultivating relationships with politicians. Access to Power: Building Political Clout for the Arts (7 pages, PDF) discusses several possible approaches, including working with new legislators as soon as they take office, recruiting influential arts and community leaders to talk to legislators on behalf of arts agencies, hiring loobyists, and focusing on what matters most to politicians.