Federal appropriation requests for the Smithsonian Institution and the National Gallery of Art increased in President Obama’s 2015 fiscal year budget, released Tuesday. While budget appropriations likely will change once congressional appropriation committees weigh in, the proposed increases to arts funding accompany sweeping increases to federal spending that total more than $55 billion in new appropriations.
The Smithsonian Institution received a $45 million increase over the 2014 year, with an $850 million request allotted for salaries, expenses, programming and maintenance. Much of the facilities request will go to fund the National Museum of African American History and Culture, scheduled to open late 2015. The Smithsonian received $19 million less in the president’s proposed budget than it requested for the 2014 fiscal year.
Proposed funding for the National Gallery of Art increased by $7 million over the 2014 year, with the president’s budget calling for $140 million for salaries, expenses and renovations. NGA received $4 million less than it requested for facilities maintenance in 2014, but it received its full request for salaries and operations.
Not all arts institutions saw their requested appropriations increase. The proposed request for the Kennedy Center calls for $22 million for operating costs, a $200,000 decrease from last year. The Kennedy Center’s requested maintenance appropriation also decreased by $1.5 million, bringing its requested appropriation to $30 million
The president’s budget called for $146 million for the National Endowment for the Arts, the same amount requested in the 2014 proposed budget.