On February 24, 2014, The Listening Tour, held in Lowell, strengthened the argument that arts and culture are vital factors in the state economy. The Listening Tour is a Joint Committee session featuring representatives from the region’s arts, cultural, and tourism organizationsRepresentatives Cory Atkins and Steven Howitt and State Senators Kathleen O’Connor Ives and Eileen Donoghue, spoke at the event stressing the importance of the creative community.
Representative Atkins expressed how she hopes to increase the budget for the Massachusetts Cultural Council and the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism for the upcoming year. According to Rep. Atkins, the state thrives on “two things: the innovative economy and the creative economy” stating that every dollar invested in the cultural and tourism sectors, “generate[s] $5 in revenue.” Rep. Atkins also wanted to remind other legislators that the tourism and cultural sectors are “the thirdlargest revenue generator in the state.”
Currently, MASSCreative will be working with arts and cultural leaders around the state to organize meetings with their local legislators. If you’re interested in attending a meeting in your area to discuss the impact of arts and culture in the community you can contact Drew Esposito at firstname.lastname@example.org or CiCi Flanagan at email@example.com.
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