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Relief Funding Now for the Arts

From our friends at ARTS North Carolina:

As the Executive Director of Arts NC, I know this is an overwhelming time, and that there is much to learn and much to do. I implore you to use the information provided and to please do all of the crucial actions listed below as soon as possible. It is important for this work and the future of the arts in North Carolina.

Yesterday, Governor Cooper requested that President Trump issue a major disaster declaration for the state of North Carolina. If approved, this will enable much need federal assistance to our state. Most specifically contract and self-employed workers and artists, as well as other not covered by state unemployment insurance, would now be eligible for benefits through the Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) program. Unemployment issues for nonprofits and artists has been a primary focus of our work at Arts NC during this crisis and we will continue to advocate on this and other issues and provide updates to you as soon as possible.

COVID-19 Survey and Resources
Through the COVID-19 Action & Resource Center, Arts NC provides you the latest information about the impact of the pandemic, arts advocacy, and our primary issues of emergency funding and loans, as well as unemployment benefits. All of that is covered in detail for free in this recorded webinar: Arts Advocacy at Every Level During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Also, slides are available for quick reference and contain useful links to further resources and information. Please share this information with others and encourage your networks to sign up for the Arts NC Email List so they stay informed and engaged.

Congress is still negotiating a $2 TRILLION Stimulus Package that should provide $4 BILLION in financial relief to arts nonprofits through the National Endowment for the Arts. Early reports are that the amount under consideration is a paltry fraction of the requested relief our industry desperately needs. Take 2 minutes and contact your representatives in Congress right now and tell them we need relief for the arts. If you have already done so- please do it again. A special thanks to Rep. Alma Adams for her letter calling for this funding to Speaker Pelosi and the entire US House of Representatives.

Arts organizations MUST ACT NOW to be sure we can make the case for the relief funding we need. The COVID-19 Arts & Culture Financial Impact Survey is a vital tool to make our case at all levels of government. While our response rate to date is high, over half of respondents expected negative financial impact but did not report it yet. IT IS CRUCIAL THAT WE UPDATE THIS SURVEY OFTEN WITH ESTIMATED FINANCIAL IMPACT. Each time you take the survey, enter the cumulative estimate of your losses and expenses. Our current information make it appear our issues are not severe. We know that is not the case.

Also, nonprofit arts organization should take 30 seconds to sign on in support an amendment today that would significantly increase the cap on the above-the-line charitable deductions in the current stimulus package being negotiated in Congress right now.

There is a saying that when everything is an emergency, then nothing is. Unfortunately, this pandemic has made so much in our industry, and our nation, an emergency. Please make the time to act. It is crucial to beginning our recovery. The sooner we start, the sooner we will once again be able to invigorate our creative state with our passion and vision.