Performing Arts Alliance Newsletter
    May 20, 2016
  In this Issue:
Overtime Pay Webinars
State Dept. Call for Proposals
The Arts in a Well-Rounded Education
House Challenges Net Neutrality
PAA Submits NEA Testimonies  

Register for Independent Sector's Webinars on Overtime Pay Regulations

Independent Sector is presenting two webinars to address both current and newly finalized overtime rules. We encourage you to register for both learning opportunities:

Part 1: Is your organization in compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act?
Tuesday, May 24, 1-2pm EST

Officials from DOL's Wage and Hour Division will provide information on the current overtime statute and how it applies to the nonprofit sector. Officials will take questions directly from the field.

Part 2: Beginning on December 1, the overtime compensation threshold will double. What will this mean for your organization and staff?
Tuesday, May 31, 1-2:30pm EST

On May 18, the Department of Labor published a final rule that revises regulations governing overtime compensation related to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The rule will raise the salary threshold for employees to qualify for overtime compensation from $23,660 to $47,476. A panel of sector experts will help participants understand and prepare for this major change.. Speakers include Kathryn Smith, general director of Madison Opera, who will address the regulations' impact on performing arts organizations.

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Call for Proposals: Administration for State Department Cultural Exchange Programs

The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) at the State Department is inviting proposals from public and private U.S. organizations to administer three international exchange programs: Hip Hop Collaboration and Community Arts Incubation Creative Arts Exchange programs (CAE), and Arts Envoy.

CAE initiatives are arts-based people-to-people international exchanges that support and further U.S. Department of State foreign policy objectives. The Hip Hop Collaboration program will engage hip hop artists for artistic collaboration, entrepreneurial skills-building, and outreach to youth to explore and address conflict resolution strategies.  The Community Arts Incubation program will send approximately six to eight American artists abroad to collaborate with local youth and underserved populations on community-based art projects in new media and/or digital arts. Applicants must be U.S. non-profit arts and educational organizations. Apply here by Thursday, May 26, 2016.

The Arts Envoy exchange program annually enables approximately 200 American artists and cultural experts (either individuals or groups) to travel abroad to engage and consult with key foreign audiences through performances, workshops, meetings, seminars, and appearances in foreign media. Full details can be found here. Applicants must be U.S. public or private organizations; apply here by Friday, May 27, 2016.

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Secretary King Acknowledges the Arts in a Well-Rounded Education


(photo credit: U.S. Department of Education)

In a recent address at Las Vegas Academy of the Arts, U.S. Department of Education Secretary John King spoke about the importance of the arts in a well-rounded education:

"States must commit to providing the resources to every district that are necessary to provide students with a well-rounded education. Arts instruction, science labs, and school counselors--just to cite a few examples--are not luxuries or extras...they are essential--essential to a quality education."

Read the full speech here.

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New Net Neutrality Challenges in the House


While we await the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals' decision on net neutrality after hearing oral arguments last December, House Republicans have taken action to halt the FCC's authority to impose parts of the rules. The House passed the "No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act" (H.R. 2666) which prohibits the FCC from doing exactly what the title describes.

The bill means to enforce via law FCC Chairman Wheeler's pledge that the agency would not use its 2015 Open Internet Order to regulate Internet Service Provider's (ISP) rates. Passing a bill into law would codify this pledge for future administrations, but Wheeler is concerned that the bill will actually hinder the agency from enforcing other net neutrality rules such as those banning ISPs from blocking or throttling lawful content (more). 

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PAA Submits Testimonies About NEA to Congress

PAA recently submitted written testimonies about the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to the House and Senate appropriations subcommittees on the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies. These subcommittees make recommendations for the NEA's annual appropriation, and testimonies will be considered during FY17 appropriations debates.

PAA's testimonies highlighted the value of the NEA's support for the performing arts in the United States and included specific examples of PAA member organizations' programs and services that have received recent grant support from the agency. Click here to read PAA's testimonies.

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The Performing Arts Alliance (PAA) is a 501c4 multi-disciplinary coalition of national service organizations from the professional nonprofit performing arts field. Through legislative and grassroots action, PAA advocates before the U.S. Congress and key policy makers for national policies that enhance and foster the contributions the performing arts make to America.