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[[underline]] The National Symphony Orchestra [[/underline]]

The Secretary informed the Regents that there had been considerable discussion of a possible linkage between the Smithsonian Institution and the National Symphony Orchestra, sparked primarily by the financial crisis facing the Symphony. The Symphony's immediate problem is a projected total deficit of $2.5 million by the end of fiscal year 1981. The Secretary had been a party in discussions with Symphony Board members and Chairman Yates of the House Appropriations Subcommittee. The suggestion had been made that funds could be appropriated for the Symphony and passed through the Smithsonian budget.

It was noted that the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee had just marked up the fiscal year 1981 appropriations bill and had included the requisite funds in the budget of the National Park Service, not the Smithsonian.

In their discussion the Regents reached a consensus that the most reasonable long-term solution to the Symphony's funding problems should involve direct appropriations to the Kennedy Center, for which the Symphony would serve as the "house orchestra." It was noted that similar such arrangements have been made in major metropolitan areas throughout the nation with funding supplemented by local government and corporate sponsorship.
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