Because the per person expenditure of non-residents is four times that of WindhamCounty residents,the notion of attracting visiting audiences to local events provides asimple, strong economic incentive.
Pam Leirle noted that we often think of non-profit institutions as doing good in the community.even if we don’t participate directly in them, they are of benefit because their activities add to thecommunity.She also noted that the Report only takes into account non-profit entities. If the for-profit artsorganizations were included, it is estimated that the total economic impact would be tripled toabout $30 million. To put that number in context, the Brattleboro Town budget is $15 million,
the Town of Rockingham budget is about $5 million and Sovernet’s revenue is in the range of $10-12 million. If the Arts Community generates $30 million in revenue, it is a significant part of the economy. It brings money and respect into the community; the money tends to stay in thecommunity. Non-profit arts organizations are also more recession resilient. They keep offering programs andthereby keep the economy going even in bad economic times.. . . because arts and culture organizations are strongly rooted in their community, theseare jobs that necessarily remain local and cannot be shipped overseas.
While not a quantitative outcome, it is safe to say that we experience a better quality of life herebecause of the arts. The arts presence also helps other businesses recruit employees. Mostpeople are now aware that Smithsonian Magazine rated Brattleboro as number 11 in its list of “The 20 Best Small Towns in America.” In doing so, the magazine noted the Brattleboro artscommunity, “Brattleboro takes pride in its reputation as a hidden artistic haven.”
Brattleboro is the recipient of a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for cultural asset mapping and cultural district planning.
The Brattleboro Music Center -http://www.bmcvt.org/- with a yearly budget of $800,000 and 22FTE jobs is definitely a significant player in the local arts community. Pam reiterated a key observation from the Report:Communities that recognize arts and culture as a powerful, smart economic sector andthat invest in their own communities’ creative assets reap the additional benefits of jobs,
Total Expenditures for FY 2012 - $ 14,777,294.00.
2011 Annual Report
, Town of Brattleboro p.76