Apr 08, 2013 Jason Emerson Uncategorized
Nonprofit arts and culture organizations are a $5 million industry in Cazenovia that supports more than 200 full-time equivalent jobs and generates more than $700,000 in local and government state revenue, according to the results of a recent economic impact study.
These results, presented to a joint meeting of the village and town boards by members of the Cazenovia Arts Heritage Alliance last week, “lay to rest the misconception that communities support the arts and culture at the expense of local economic development,” and are a solid indication of the need for local government support of the arts and culture industry, said organization members Sarah Webster, Barbara Bartlett, Geoff Navais and Jack Rooney, who made the presentation.
“We are anxious for you to participate with us,” Rooney, CAHA member and former president of the Cultural Resources Council of Onondaga County, told the two boards, adding that an improved fostering of arts and culture will “increase income and generate a wonderful sense of place in our community.”
The Cazenovia Arts and Heritage Alliance is an organization consisting of numerous arts, cultural, and heritage groups in the greater Cazenovia area that meets monthly to work to promote their local industry. Its mission is to “celebrate Cazenovia’s unique history, create and support new artistic endeavors, and work to engage and enliven the citizenship through the arts.”
The alliance’s first major endeavor has been to complete an economic impact study of the arts on Cazenovia. The results were presented April 3 to a standing room only, joint meeting of the Cazenovia village and town boards.
The study was conducted by Dr. Ronald Wright, a business analytics professor at Le Moyne College, who recently oversaw the nationally recognized “Americans for the Arts” economic impact study conducted for Onondaga County. Wright presented the study findings to the April 3 joint meeting.
The Cazenovia study had 100 percent participation from 17 local organizations that fit within the established guidelines, which were that they must be a nonprofit group within the village or town and must have a focus on arts, culture or heritage in their mission statement. Some of the participating organizations included the Catherine Cummings Theatre, the Cazenovia Preservation Foundation, Open Hand Theatre and Stone Quarry Hill Art Park.
The study was conducted using the calculation model for the Onondaga County study and then generating comparable assumptions for Cazenovia, Wright said. The study found that local nonprofit arts and culture organizations have $2.4 million in expenditures and generate about 130 full-time equivalent jobs, while the audiences who attend and supports the arts and culture events and organizations spend about $2.7 million and support an equivalent of 90 full-time jobs for the area. This totals a $5.16 million industry in the town and village communities that supports 220 full-time equivalent jobs and pumps revenue into local restaurants, hotels, retail stores and other area businesses, Wright said.
“There’s real money here, real potential, a real way to increase economic viability here,” he said. “People spend money when they attend [arts and cultural] events. If you’re interested in job creation, this is job creation.”
Rooney said the alliance was seeking municipal support for its mission and requested that both boards endorse a CAHA proposed statement/resolution recognizing CAHA as an organization of standing, supporting its mission to promote and stimulate arts and culture by nonprofit groups through public policy and establish a joint arts and heritage commission to work in tandem with the CAHA.
Both Mayor Kurt Wheeler and Supervisor Ralph Monforte said the request would be added to the agendas of their respective boards’ next regular meetings.
For more information about the Cazenovia Arts and Heritage Alliance, to attend a monthly meeting or inquire about joining the group in its mission, contact Sarah Webster at 655-3196 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican and Eagle Bulletin newspapers.