Recently, our non-Representative John Fleming voted FOR an additional $10.6 million CUT in funding for the National Endowment for the Arts from the FY 2012 Interior Appropriations bill.
Thankfully, the U.S. House of Representatives successfully voted DOWN the amendment proposed by Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI).
Why is this important, especially for the State of Louisiana?
“In June 2001, ArtsMarket Inc. released a study at the request of the Louisiana Division of Arts, The House that Art Built: Economic Impact of the Arts in Louisiana, that confirmed the tremendous economic benefits that flowed to the local and state economies as a result of a string of arts-related activities and spending. The study, a survey of both Louisiana residents and arts organizations about their arts-related activities, examined the overall economic impact of the entire non-profit arts industry in Louisiana. The source of funding for this most recent study was the federal National Endowment for the Arts’ Basic State Agreement/Challenge America Program.
As with the example of the other state case studies on economic impact, even though it is close to five years from it release date, it is fair to conclude that a more recent study would corroborate the trends more than apparent in the 2001 report: the state of Louisiana benefits immensely from a large and diverse group of arts presenting and producing organizations.Here, in bullet form, are the major results of this study:
» Arts in Louisiana had a total economic impact of $934 million;
» Arts organizations and non-profit organizations sponsoring arts activities had a direct effect $202 million, with a total impact of $315 million;
» Arts participants who spend offsite in concert with arts event attendance had a direct effect of $410 million, with a total impact of $619 million;
» Spending offsite by arts participants in Louisiana averaged $48 per person in food and beverage spending, $143 for hotels and $78 for shopping.
» Louisiana’s non-profit arts activities generated $195 million in revenue;
» Individuals, corporations, foundations and endowments contributed $89 million (41 percent) of total revenue;
» Federal, state and local government investment in the arts of $55 million resulted in $150 million in government tax revenue. Of this:
- $63 million was state and local taxes
- $87 million was federal taxes
» Total government investment of $55 million resulted in $150 million in taxes, 2.7 times as much as invested;
» Every dollar in state support leveraged $7 in earned and contributed revenue;
» Ninety percent of all money spent on arts programming remained in Louisiana.
Jobs and Wages:
» Arts in Louisiana created 18,220 jobs in the non-profit arts sector;
» 14,447 jobs were sustained by spending offsite at arts events;
» Arts in Louisiana generated over $65 million in employment and wages, salaries and benefits for 12,000 Louisiana residents in the non-profit arts sector;
» More than $59 million was paid to artists.
» Arts events in Louisiana garnered over 23 million attendees;
» Forty-six percent of Louisiana residents attended arts events;
» More than 31 percent attended visual and performing arts events;
» More than 17 percent of attendees traveled over 50 miles to attend arts events;
» Thirty percent of the residents surveyed indicated that they would attend events in other states if they were not available in Louisiana;
» 3.5 million students of all ages are reached by 12,235 art education opportunities;
» 85,000 individuals volunteered for the arts.
» More than 54,000 arts events are sponsored by Louisiana’s non-profit organizations;
» The Louisiana Division of the Arts supported more than 700 arts projects throughout the state in fiscal year 2000 but had to decline more than 500 due to lack of funds.” ~Source: Americans for the Arts, 2002
Please, tell Dr. Fleming how you feel about his LACK OF SUPPORT for his own constituents!
I sent him the following email via Advocate for the Arts:
“As an artist living and working in our State of Louisiana, I realize how important arts, culture and the humanities are to our struggling economy.
Obviously, you DON’T realize this because you voted to cut additional funding to the NEA.
Thank you for letting your constituents know, once again, how you feel about our well-being and the fiscal well-being of our state. Your vote against arts funding will be another easy-to-remember reason to vote AGAINST you!
Praying for your defeat, Debbie Buchanan Engle”