WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2020, approved by Congress and signed into law by President Donald J. Trump on December 20, 2019, provides funding for the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) at $162.25 million, an increase of $7.25 million over the agency’s Fiscal Year 2019 funding level. This is the largest increase in the NEH budget in a decade.
In addition to providing funding for NEH’s seven grantmaking divisions and support for local and regional humanities programs administered by the network of 55 state and territorial humanities councils, the legislation provides more $4.17 million for NEH’s new “A More Perfect Union” initiative. Launched in 2019, “A More Perfect Union” supports humanities projects related to the upcoming 250th anniversary of the founding of the United States, civics education, and veterans programming. The House bill’s explanatory statement additionally commends NEH’s important work in Native American language preservation, teacher education, and ongoing support for the Chronicling America database of historic American newspapers.
“This funding will allow NEH to continue our work strengthening cultural institutions and increasing access to archival collections, scholarship, and public programs that tell the American story,” said NEH Chairman Jon Parrish Peede. “As the United States looks toward our 250th anniversary as a nation in 2026, NEH is proud to help advance understanding of the democratic principles on which the nation was founded and provide opportunities for Americans to actively engage with our country’s past.”