NHPRC Funding Alert: Contact Your Senator Today!

July 18, 2013—On Tuesday, July 23, the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government (FS&GG) will mark up a fiscal year 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 urge them to provide NHPRC with $4.75 million (level funding) for FY 2014.

Yesterday afternoon 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.  Originally the House FS&GG subcommittee had provided zero funding for the NHPRC but, 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.

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.  It represents a $2.25 million cut from the FY 2011 level of $7 million and a decrease of $8.25 million from the FY 2010 level of $13 million.

The Senate FS&GG Subcommittee will consider NHPRC funding on Tuesday, July 23—so you must contact them by July 22, 2013, if you want to make a difference!

What You Can Do:

If your Senator is on the Appropriations Committee, please contact her or him by phone, fax, or e-mail TODAY to request support of NHPRC funding at $4.75 million.  View a roster of Senate Appropriations Committee members here.  The full Senate Appropriations Committee will likely mark up the bill before Congress leaves for its August recess.

If your Senator is on the Senate FS&GG Subcommittee, please contact him or her by phone, fax, or email TODAY to request support of NHPRC funding at $4.75 million.  Click on the name below for a link to the member’s website and contact information.

If your Senator is not on the Senate Appropriations Committee, you and/or your organization can call, fax, or email letters to the FS&GG Committee Chair and Ranking Member to urge them to support a funding level of $4.75 million.
Note:  Phone calls are the best way to reach the appropriate staff person.  But if you’re not able to call, please send a message via email or fax.

Tips for Making Your Pitch:

  • Make your request directly and clearly.
  • Be specific about the benefits of NHPRC to you, your organization, constituents, or the state.
  • 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.
  • Remember that each contact—including yours—will make a difference.

It is imperative that we make the voice of the archives community heard loudly and clearly. We can make a difference only if we take action now!

Talking Points About NHPRC:

This small grants program within the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) enables NARA to provide national leadership through and promote national and regional cooperation among the state archivists to address common issues, such as electronic records.   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 it is committed to promoting increased public access to these publications through digitization. A perfect example is the Founder’s On-Line project, which recently went live and which provides free public access to the papers of Washington, Jefferson, Franklin, and other Founders.
  • Since 1965, NHPRC has awarded more than $200 million in competitive grants to more than 45,000 historical and genealogical societies, colleges and universities, state and local government archives, and other institutions and non-profit groups in all states and territories.
  • Funds have been used to preserve historical records in all formats, initiate electronic records programs, create cost-effective models that are shared among archives, prepare and implement disaster plans, and support training and education of the “citizen archivists” and paraprofessionals who assist in caring for our nation’s archives. These grants make accessible records and documentary editions for use by classroom teachers, students, scholars, public officials, lawyers, local historians, genealogists, journalists, and many others.
  • 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.
  • For a list of NHPRC grants by state, click here.

Thank you for your efforts to support level funding for NHPRC!

Read SAA’s letters to the Subcommittee Chair and Ranking Member below.

NHPRC_Udall_FS&GG_071913.pdf261.93 KB
NHPRC_Johanns_FS&GG_071913.pdf262.37 KB