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Study reveals $60.8 million economic impact of Jacksonville’s nonprofit arts industry

A recent study by the Northeast Florida Center for Community Initiatives at the University of North Florida found that in 2010, Jacksonville’s nonprofit arts and culture industry contributed more than $60.8 million to the local economy.

The research study measured the economic contributions of 25 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations which received funding from the City of Jacksonville’s Cultural Service Grant program. The report was commissioned by the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville.

The report summarizes data from cultural organizations representing music, dance, visual arts, theater, history, and arts education. In 2010, these groups reported total expenditures of over $31.2 million. Expenditures were reported primarily in the areas of personnel, rent, advertising, and artistic fees. Using a multiplier developed by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the economic impact of the arts and culture industry was determined to be more than $60.8 million.

In 2010, nonprofit arts organizations in Jacksonville supported 190 full-time jobs, 106 part-time jobs, and 395 independent contract positions. Additionally, the industry was assisted by more than 9,965 community volunteers who donated 159,114 hours.

Organizations reported contributing more than $1.6 million in payroll, sales and property taxes. Surveyed organizations reported 637,468 admissions to cultural events with 64 percent offered at free and reduced rates.

“If jobs and expenditures were the sole measurements of our work, we would have a compelling story to tell,” said Robert Arleigh White, executive director of the Cultural Council. “But the importance of arts and culture are not fully measured in those terms. Tourism, downtown revitalization, educational enhancements, and the retention of a high-wage workforce are important assets offered by our cultural partners to the people of Jacksonville – not to mention what they provide in entertainment, enjoyment and enrichment.”

“We began compiling data on the nonprofit arts industry in 2001 when the reported economic impact of Cultural Service Grant recipients was $58 million,” said Jeffry Will, Ph.D., director of the Northeast Florida Center for Community Initiatives. “Indeed, since 2001 CSG agencies have yielded an economic impact of over $650 million for Jacksonville. Through the years, the industry has supported thousands of jobs and attendance is robust, demonstrating that the arts serve as an essential local activity. Clearly, the arts provide a strong return on the public dollar.”

For a complete copy of the report or its summary, contact the Cultural Council at 904-358-3600.

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