The Alabama State Council on the Arts was created by Executive Order No. 29, on
April 8, 1966 by Governor George C. Wallace, stating that "The practice and enjoyment
of the arts are of increasing importance to the personal welfare of the people as
a vital aspect of our cultural heritage and as valued means of expanding the scope
of our educational programs."
Several legislative acts have been necessary to get the State Arts Council where
it is today. First there was the enabling legislation, then the name was changed
to add "and Humanities;" followed by legislation to put the arts on the State Income
Tax Return and lastly to delete "and Humanities."
Legislative Act No. 551 established the Alabama State Council on the Arts and was
signed into law by Governor Lurleen B. Wallace on September 8, 1967, thereby creating
an official State Arts Agency as required by the National Foundation on the Arts
and Humanities by Act No. 1065. In September of 1969, Legislative Act 551 was amended
by Act No. 1065 and signed by Governor Albert P. Brewer to include Alabama State
Council on the Arts and Humanities.
In 1976, Legislative Act No. 689 changed the
composition of the membership and terms of office of the Council. In an act passed
in the 1987 Legislative Session and signed into law by Governor Guy Hunt, the name
of the Council was changed to Alabama State Council on the Arts, thereby deleting
The Act of 1967 placed the State of Alabama in the official position of recognizing,
encouraging, and supporting the growth and development of the arts in Alabama. The
Legislature passed this act without a dissenting vote.
The first allocation to the Council was $25,000.00 from the National Endowment for
the Arts. By 1998, the budget had increased to $5,018,423 which included $4,593,423
in state appropriated dollars and $500,000 in federal grants.
The Council continues to stimulate growth of the arts and its impact in Alabama
by working with a wide range of arts organizations, individual artists, educational
institutions, and communities. In directing this effort, the Council has established
goals which reflect current philosophy and priorities. These goals were defined
through the agency's long-range plan, A State Blueprint for Supporting the Arts.