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Austin arts get cash infusion

Friday, October 28, 2016 by Nora Ankrum

The Economic Development Department’s Cultural Arts Division announced yesterday that it has awarded $11,231,122 in contracts to local artists and arts groups for Fiscal Year 2016-2017. The amount is higher than ever before, according to the announcement. Last year, it was $9.1 million, and the year before, it was $8 million. The funding “generates a huge return on investment,” said Cultural Arts Division Manager Meghan Wells, “in terms of both the dollars leveraged and the enrichment of our daily lives by the amazing variety and quality of the arts produced here in Austin.” In FY 2014-2015, the city’s 294 arts contracts supported 513 full-time positions, 1,242 part-time positions and fees for 8,190 artists. Overall, according to the announcement, which cites findings from a study conducted by TXP Inc., “The creative economy generates $71M a year in new taxes and employs 49,000 people.”

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