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#InviteCongress: Recess Underway, Make the Case for Museums

Category: Advocacy Alert
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Advocacy Alert – August 2, 2019

Recess Underway – Invite Congress and Make the Case for OMS!

The coming weeks and months are a critical time in the process to help secure the proposed increases for the federal agencies that support the important work of museums. It’s not too late to invite your legislators and their staff to visit your museum and make the case directly for federal support for museums. Here are some of the steps to get started:

  1. Identify who represents you in Congress and your state legislature and send your invitations to your legislators’ offices.
  2. Find the name of the scheduler for your federal legislator’s office and call to follow up with them. You can also find Congressional offices’ local contact information.
  3. Remember to invite board members and trustees, museum staff and volunteers, and visitors who have been inspired by your museum to participate.
  4. Let us know when visits are taking place.
  5. Prepare for successful visits by using our Advocacy and Policy Issues pages to get tips and information on key issues affecting museums. You can also download and share the powerful information from AAM’s key research reports, Museums as Economic Engines and Museums & Public Opinion, including your state’s economic impact infographic and the Museum Facts Infographic.

See the full AAM “How To” Guide and be sure to use #InviteCongress on social media.

Contact Your Senators: Opportunity to Secure Historic Increase for Office of Museum Services

Before going home for the August congressional recess, the House and Senate passed a two-year deal on increasing budget caps and suspending the debt limit that is expected to be signed into law by the president. The deal allows the stalled congressional appropriations process to move forward when Congress returns in early September. In the meantime, critical funding decisions are being considered now.

Earlier this summer, as part of a four-bill spending package (H.R. 2740), the U.S. House of Representatives approved the FY 2020 Labor-HHS-Education and Related Agencies appropriations measure, which includes an historic $8 million increase to $42.7 million in funding for the Office of Museum Services (OMS) within the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

The Senate has yet to consider its version of the bill, so it’s critical that you write your Senators now, especially if they are members of the Senate Appropriations Committee (see below) – or meet with them in person as part of #InviteCongress – to ask them to support the House-passed funding increase for OMS. For more information, please see our issue brief on IMLS Funding.

It’s critical for you and other museum advocates from across the country to make your voices heard now!


Members of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee (alphabetical by state)

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)

Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL) Chair *

Sen. John Boozman (R-AR)

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) *

Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE)

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) *

Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI) *

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) *

Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) *

Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)

Sen. John Neely Kennedy (R-LA) *

Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD)

Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME)

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) *

Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS) *

Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT)

Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT)

Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND)

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) *

Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM)

Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) *

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) *

Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) *

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) *

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) *

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) Vice Chair *

Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) *

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) *

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) *

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) *

*Indicates member of the Labor-HHS-Education Subcommittee, which funds IMLS.

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