20 U.S.C. § 954 - National Endowment for the Arts

Cite as20 U.S.C. § 954

(a) Establishment

There is established within the Foundation a National Endowment for the Arts.

(b) Chairperson of the Endowment; term of office; vacancies

(1) The Endowment shall be headed by a chairperson, to be known as the Chairperson of the National Endowment for the Arts, who shall be appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.

(2) The term of office of the Chairperson shall be four years and the Chairperson shall be eligible for reappointment. The provisions of this subsection shall apply to any person appointed to fill a vacancy in the office of Chairperson. Upon expiration of the Chairperson's term of office the Chairperson shall serve until the Chairperson's successor shall have been appointed and shall have qualified.

(c) Program of contracts, grants-in-aid, or loans to groups and individuals for projects and productions; traditionally underrepresented recipients of financial assistance

The Chairperson, with the advice of the National Council on the Arts, is authorized to establish and carry out a program of contracts with, or grants-in-aid or loans to, groups or, in appropriate cases, individuals of exceptional talent engaged in or concerned with the arts, for the purpose of enabling them to provide or support-

(1) projects and productions which have substantial national or international artistic and cultural significance, giving emphasis to American creativity and cultural diversity and to the maintenance and encouragement of professional excellence;

(2) projects and productions, meeting professional standards or standards of authenticity or tradition, irrespective of origin, which are of significant merit and which, without such assistance, would otherwise be unavailable to our citizens for geographic or economic reasons;

(3) projects and productions that will encourage and assist artists and enable them to achieve wider distribution of their works, to work in residence at an educational or cultural institution, or to achieve standards of professional excellence;

(4) projects and productions which have substantial artistic and cultural significance and that reach, or reflect the culture of, a minority, inner city, rural, or tribal community;

(5) projects and productions that will encourage public knowledge, education, understanding, and appreciation of the arts;

(6) workshops that will encourage and develop the appreciation and enjoyment of the arts by our citizens;

(7) programs for the arts at the local level;

(8) projects that enhance managerial and organizational skills and capabilities;

(9) projects, productions, and workshops of the kinds described in paragraphs (1) through (8) through film, radio, video, and similar media, for the purpose of broadening public access to the arts; and

(10) other relevant projects, including surveys, research, planning, and publications relating to the purposes of this subsection.

In the case of publications under paragraph (10) of this subsection such publications may be supported without regard for the provisions of section 501 of title 44 only if the Chairperson consults with the Joint Committee on Printing of the Congress and the Chairperson submits to the Committee on Labor and Human Resources of the Senate and the Committee on Education and Labor of the House of Representatives a report justifying any exemption from such section 501. Any loans made by the Chairperson under this subsection shall be made in accordance with terms and conditions approved by the Secretary of the Treasury. In selecting individuals and groups of exceptional talent as recipients of financial assistance to be provided under this subsection, the Chairperson shall give particular regard to artists and artistic groups that have traditionally been underrepresented.

(d) Application for payment; regulations and procedures

No payment shall be made under this section except upon application therefor which is submitted to the National Endowment for the Arts in accordance with regulations issued and procedures established by the Chairperson. In establishing such regulations and procedures, the Chairperson shall ensure that-

(1) artistic excellence and artistic merit are the criteria by which applications are judged, taking into consideration general standards of decency and respect for the diverse beliefs and values of the American public; and

(2) applications are consistent with the purposes of this section. Such regulations and procedures shall clearly indicate that obscenity is without artistic merit, is not protected speech, and shall not be funded. Projects, productions, workshops, and programs that are determined to be obscene are prohibited from receiving financial assistance under this subchapter from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The disapproval or approval of an application by the Chairperson shall not be construed to mean, and shall not be considered as evidence that, the project, production, workshop, or program for which the applicant requested financial assistance is or is not obscene.

(e) Limitation on amount of grant to group; grants and contracts of the National Endowment for the Arts

The total amount of any grant to any group pursuant to subsection (c) of this section shall not exceed 50 per centum of the total cost of such project or production, except that not more than 20 per centum of the funds allotted by the National Endowment for the Arts for the purposes of subsection (c) for any fiscal year may be available for grants and contracts in that fiscal year without regard to such limitation.

(f) Eligibility for financial assistance

Any group shall be eligible for financial assistance pursuant to this section only if (1) no part of its net earnings inures to the benefit of any private stockholder or stockholders, or individual or individuals, and (2) donations to such group are allowable as a charitable contribution under the standards of subsection (c) of section 170 of title 26.

(g) Grants to States for projects and productions; applications; terms and conditions of State plans; minimum allotments; excess appropriations; cost limitations; grants to regional groups; non-Federal funding; definitions

(1) The Chairperson, with the advice of the National Council on the Arts, is authorized to establish and carry out a program of grants-in-aid to assist the several States in supporting existing projects and productions which meet the standards enumerated in subsection (c) of this section, and in developing projects and productions in the arts in such a manner as will furnish adequate programs, facilities, and services in the arts to all the people and communities in each of the several States.

(2) In order to receive assistance under this subsection in any fiscal year, a State shall submit an application for such grants at such time as shall be specified by the Chairperson and accompany such application with a plan which the Chairperson finds-

(A) designates or provides for the establishment of a State agency (hereinafter in this section referred to as the "State agency") as the sole agency for the administration of the State plan;

(B) provides that funds paid to the State under this subsection will be expended solely on projects and productions approved by the State agency which carry out one or more of the objectives of subsection (c);

(C) provides that the State agency will make such reports, in such form and containing such information, as the Chairperson may from time to time require, including a description of the progress made toward achieving the goals of the State plan;

(D) provides-

(i) assurances that the State agency has held, after reasonable notice, public meetings in the State to allow all groups of artists, interested organizations, and the public to present views and make recommendations regarding the State plan; and

(ii) a summary of such recommendations and the State agency's response to such recommendations; and

(E) contains-

(i) a description of the level of participation during the most recent preceding year for which information is available by artists, artists' organizations, and arts organizations in projects and productions for which financial assistance is provided under this subsection;

(ii) for the most recent preceding year for which information is available, a description of the extent projects and productions receiving financial assistance from the State arts agency are available to all people and communities in the State; and

(iii) a description of projects and productions receiving financial assistance under this subsection that exist or are being developed to secure wider participation of artists, artists' organizations, and arts organizations identified under clause (i) of this subparagraph or that address the availability of the arts to all people or communities identified under clause (ii) of this subparagraph.

No application may be approved unless the accompanying plan satisfies the requirements specified in this subsection.

(3) Of the sums available to carry out this subsection for any fiscal year, each State which has a plan approved by the Chairperson shall be allotted at least $200,000. If the sums appropriated are insufficient to make the allotments under the preceding sentence in full, such sums shall be allotted among such States in equal amounts. In any case where the sums available to carry out this subsection for any fiscal year are in excess of the amount required to make the allotments under the first sentence of this paragraph-

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