The House and Senate have passed a $12.5 million increase in the budgets of the NEA and NEH! (In case you're wondering, that's roughly an 8% boost). The budgets for both agencies will now be $167.5 million.
According to the e-mail I just received, this brings the NEA's budget to the highest it's been in 16 years. In 1995, the NEA's budget was $162 million dollars, but adjusted for inflation, it was $224 million dollars. In other words, this is a victory (particularly in this climate when the Republicans are looking for basically anything remotely demagogable), but it's not quite as big a victory as Americans for the Arts' might have you believe.
We have a long way to go if we're to reach either the funding goal of $1 per capita arts funding ($300 million) or if we are going to restore the NEA to its funding height, adjusted for inflation ($470 million), but this is a start.