On July 23, the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government (FS&GG) will mark up a fiscal year (FY) 2014 spending bill that provides funding for the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). It is vitally important that you contact the members of the Senate Appropriations Committee TODAY and ask them to provide the NHPRC with $4.75 million (level funding) for FY ’14.
On July 17, The House Appropriations Committee cleared a FS&GG bill that provides only $3 million for the NHPRC. This amount will not support the ongoing programs and mission of the Commission at even a minimal level. The House FS&GG subcommittee had provided zero funding for the NHPRC. However, thanks to the efforts of Representative David Price (D-NC), the full Committee adopted his amendment to provide the $3 million in funding. The amendment was approved by voice vote.
The NHPRC is funded at $4.75 million for the current fiscal year (FY 2013). This amount reflects the across-the-board cuts imposed when the budget sequester went into effect earlier this year. This figure represents a $2.25 million cut from the FY 2011 level of $7.0 million (and a decrease of $8.25 million from the FY 2010 level of $13.0 million).
The Senate FS&GG Subcommittee will consider NHPRC funding on Tuesday July 23—so you must contact them by July 22, 2013!
Here is a link to the Senate Appropriations Committee Members. It provides links to each Senator’s website that allows you to contact them by phone, fax or e-mail. The full Senate Appropriations Committee will likely mark up the bill before Congress leaves for its August recess.
The Senate FS&GG Subcommittee Members are (click on name for link to their website):
- Senator Tom Udall-(D-New Mexico)–Chairman
- Senator Dick Durbin (D-Illinois)
- Senator Chris Coons (D-Delaware)
- Senator Mike Johanns (R-Nebraska)–Ranking Member
- Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kansas)
What You Can Do:
Call your Senator’s office or send an e-mail or fax urging him or her to support NHPRC funding at its current level of $4.75 million. Calls are far superior to faxes and e-mails which take longer to reach the proper staff person.
If your Senator is not on the Senate Appropriations Committee, you or your organization can call, fax or email letters to the FS&GG Committee chair and the Ranking Member urging a funding level of $4.75 million.
There are talking points below. Make your request directly and clearly. Be specific about the benefits of NHPRC to you, your organization, constituents, or state. (For a list of NHPRC grants given in your state, select your state click here)
Personalize your call, fax or e-mail with an appeal that highlights the impact of one or two grants on you, your institution, your users, and/or your state. Each contact will make a difference. It is imperative that we make the voice of the historical and archives communities heard loud and clear. We can make a difference only if we take action now!
NHPRC Talking Points:
This small grants program within the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) enables NARA to provide:
- National leadership through grants that support exploration of major archival issues, such as electronic records, coordination and communication among state archivists nationwide. In addition, it provides grants to documentary editions (book and electronic) of the papers of individuals and institutions that have been identified as nationally significant.
- NHPRC supports publications projects of national significance, such as the Ratification of the U.S. Constitution project, the Papers of Abraham Lincoln, and the Papers of George Washington and is committed to promoting increased public access to these publications through digitization. A perfect example is the Founder’s On-Line project that recently went live and provides free public access to the papers of Washington, Jefferson, Franklin and other Founders.
- NHPRC grants provide the Archivist of the United States with his primary tool for providing national leadership and promoting national and regional cooperation among the state archivists to address common issues such as electronic records.
- NHPRC grants leverage state, local, institutional, foundation, and other private funding by requiring 50% cost sharing—i.e. for every federal dollar invested, another dollar is spent. NHPRC funding is the linchpin of most projects’ funding structures.