Invest in the Arts.  The Arts Perform.
Arts Fuel the Texas Economy.


Tax Impact on the Texas Economy
Tax Download

  • Texas’ Arts and Culture Industry promotes innovation, long-term growth and generates $4.6 billion per year in taxable sales contributing nearly $290.1 million in state sale tax revenue in 2011. This impact on the statewide economy has grown steadily since 2002, increasing 12.6 percent over the past ten years. Beyond state tax revenue, these sectors generate millions for local taxing entities including cities and economic development organizations whose funding comes from local sales tax revenue.
  • Texas’ Arts and Culture Industry plays a major role in the state’s overall economy. The 42 industry sectors that comprise the Arts and Culture Industrycreate, distribute, and sell products and services to national and international markets. The nearly 10,000 Arts and Culture Industrybusinesses located throughout Texas employ over 110,000 workers.

Tourism in Texas
Tourism Download

  • Travel and tourism spending in Texas surpassed $63.1 billion in 2011. Last year, travel-generated employment was 545,300 jobs with earnings in excess of $17.6 billion.[1]
  • In 2011, the average travel party to Texas spent $782 per trip. Travel parties participating in Museums and Art Exhibits activities spent $1,246 per trip – 59 percent more than the average travel party.
  • Four of the top ten activities for non-resident visitors are arts, culture, and history-related.
    • Based on data from the Office of the Governor, Economic Development and Tourism and studies commissioned by cities, nonprofit arts and culture industries generate $2.46 billion in tourism spending. This translates into 21,000 jobs with earnings in excess of $700 million. In addition, the state and local governments received $158.5 million in tax revenue from these visitors.

 Employment in Texas:

  • Texas’ creative sector currently employs over 672,000 innovation workers. Almost 1 in 15 Texas workers are employed in creative sector jobs. According to occupation employment forecasts produced by the Texas Workforce Commission, Texas’ creative sector employment is projected to increase by 17.5 percent or 140,000 net new jobs by 2018.
  • The 2011 average annual wage for the creative sector was approximately $74,000 compared to $41,000 for non-creative industries. This represents a 79.9 percent wage premium for creative sector workers.[1]

The Art of Economic Development in Texas

Across Texas, the creative sector employs close to 700,000 people—nearly the same number of people who live in Fort Worth. By and large, these jobs are lucrative.

In 2009, the average annual wage for people employed in the state’s creative sector was about $70,000, compared with $39,000 in other industries. Those figures paint a vivid picture of just how vital the creative sector is to the Texas economy.

In addition to providing jobs, Texas arts and cultural industries also generate $4.5 billion annually in taxable sales. Our report, Update: Impact of Arts & Culture Industries in Texas, provides detailed information on tax revenue attributable to the creative sector in Texas.

Certainly, the creative sector wields considerable social and economic clout in the state’s major urban areas: Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, San Antonio and Austin. But in other Texas communities small and large, the cultural arts—a key component of the creative sector—contribute significantly to local economies. The cultural arts bolster existing businesses and propel recruitment, retention and expansion of big and small businesses.

To gauge the difference that the cultural arts make in the Texas economy, the Texas Cultural Trust tapped economic analysis and public policy consulting firm Texas Perspectives Inc. and marketing firm Russell/Shaw to study five communities that have succeeded in leveraging the creative sector—and, more precisely, the cultural arts—to stimulate economic activity, create jobs and generate tax revenue.

The five communities are Amarillo, Clifton, El Paso, Rockport and Texarkana. All five communities have fostered economic growth through such mechanisms as performing arts centers, museums, festivals and educational programs.

Examples of how these communities have capitalized on the cultural arts include:

  • In 2006, public and private interests banded together to open Amarillo’s Globe-News Center for the Performing Arts. The $32 million center, which occupied a previously vacant downtown lot, has sparked rejuvenation of downtown Amarillo.
  • With the Bosque Arts Center as the a key component, Clifton has injected economic vitality into its once-sleepy downtown, with art galleries and restaurants among the thriving businesses. In fact, some evenings it’s hard to find a downtown parking space. In 2009, local cultural arts tourism spending generated $2.4 million in economic activity.
  • Rockport has cultivated an arts haven, including more than 15 art galleries and the annual Rockport Art Festival. Arts and cultural tourism in Rockport and the rest of Aransas County helped support more than $33 million in economic activity in 2009.
  • With a city-authored master plan as a guide, new residential and commercial developments have popped up or are being planned around downtown El Paso’s arts and cultural jewels. The downtown area had sagged because of neglect and suburban growth.
  • The Texarkana Regional Arts and Humanities Council is a hub for much of the city’s arts activities. The nonprofit council operates the county-owned Regional Arts Center and the city-owned Perot Theatre. In 2009, the Perot Theatre produced nearly $2.5 million in economic activity.

These five communities highlight the array of cultural arts opportunities available to every Texas community. The successes achieved in Amarillo, Clifton, El Paso, Rockport and Texarkana also underscore the importance of the public and private sectors in building a cultural arts economy in any community in Texas.

Revitalizing the Arts Scene in an Effort to Rejuvenate the Town

Click here for the full article.