As a result of the spending bill that passed Friday, allegedly to avoid a government shutdown, the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities are seeing a steep cut in their fiscal budgets for 2012. The two organizations will receive a 12.7% combined cut for the year after another spending cut was approved earlier this year.
Each organization will now work with a $146.3 million budget, down from $155 million and especially hard-hitting since the two organizations began 2011 with $167.5 million. The bill is now being passed onto President Obama for his signature, which seems likely since the President's original budget for the NEA and NEH was $146.3 million.
However, it seems odd that certain organizations would actually see an increase in funding, given that they are locally based. The National Gallery of Art and the Smithsonian Institute would see an increase in their operating budgets, rising from $111 million to $114.1 million and from $636.1 million to $636.5, respectively.
For capital improvements alone the Smithsonian Institution wil have its budget increased by $50 million, in part to fund the start of construction for the National Museum of African American History and Culture.