WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Representatives Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) and Nancy Mace (R-SC) reintroduced bipartisan, bicameral legislation that directs the Register of Copyrights to waive the copyright registration fee for winners of the Congressional Art Competition and the Congressional App Competition. Currently, the Register of Copyrights, Shira Perlmutter, does not have the authority to waive the registration fee. The Senate passed this legislation unanimously in 2019.
Both of these competitions, sponsored and led by the House of Representatives, encourage talented students to engage in the arts and coding. These students are recognized by each district and for the winners of the Congressional Art Competition, their work is displayed in the tunnel between the House office buildings.
“Every year, talented students across the country participate in the Congressional Art Competition and the Congressional App Competition, with the winners displaying their work in the United States Capitol,” said Senator Tillis. “I was pleased that the Senate passed this legislation unanimously last Congress, and I have had ongoing conversations about what more Washington needs to do to incentivize copyright registration. Introducing these talented students to the benefits of copyright protection is an excellent place to start.”
“Paving the way for and inspiring the next generation of creators is fundamental to both American innovation and the arts,” said Senator Leahy. “This bill will ensure that winners of the Congressional App and Art competitions will have their original works protected regardless of their financial abilities, and I’m proud to support it.”
"The commonsense, bipartisan ARTS Act will support student creators, help ignite their passions and allow them to dream big,” Said Congressman Jeffries. “Those creators are our future, and I thank my colleagues for their leadership."
“Every year, Congress urges young people from across the country to pour their heart and soul into the Congressional Art and Congressional App Competitions,” said Congresswoman Mace. “These students come from all walks of life and backgrounds. Leave it to government to charge the kids to protect their work. Give me a break!”