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Community needs arts

Posted: July 29, 2009 3:31 p.m.
Updated: July 30, 2009 4:55 a.m.
Nonprofit arts organizations are proud members of the business community - employing people locally, purchasing goods and services within the community and involved in the marketing and promotion of their cities.

In fact, there are more full-time jobs supported by the nonprofit arts than are in accounting, public safety and even private law practice, and just slightly fewer than elementary school teachers.

The arts are essential to the health and vitality of our communities. They enhance community development, spur urban renewal, attract new businesses, draw tourism dollars and create an environment that attracts skilled, educated workers who can build a robust 21st century workforce.

There are approximately 100,000 nonprofit arts organizations which spend $63.1 billion annually in the United States. Without an economic stimulus for the nonprofit arts industry, experts expect about 10 percent of these organizations (ranging from large arts institutions like museums and orchestras to small community-based organizations in suburban, urban and rural areas) to shut their doors in 2009 - a loss of 260,000 jobs.

In a report released in mid-January, the National Governor's Association stated, "Arts and culture are important to state economies.
Arts and culture-related industries, also known as ‘creative industries,' provide direct economic benefits to states and communities: They create jobs, attract investments, generate tax revenues and stimulate local economies through tourism and consumer purchases."


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