Nonprofit Arts Generate $1.1 Billion Impact On Maryland Economy

FY 2015 report shows increases in arts sector jobs, employee salaries and tax revenue

BALTIMORE, MD (December 6, 2016) – Maryland’s nonprofit arts sector had a $1.16 billion total impact on the state’s economy and supported 14,564 full-time jobs in Fiscal Year 2015 – up from $1.05 billion and 12,155 jobs in the previous year, according to a new economic impact report from the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC), an agency within the Maryland Department of Commerce that works to encourage and invest in the arts for all Marylanders. Spending by the MSAC’s 299 grantee arts organizations and their audiences support the Maryland economy by creating and retaining jobs and generating revenue for businesses and state and local governments. To view the full report, click here.

“The arts are continuing to thrive in Maryland, generating more job opportunities and a better quality of life for all Marylanders,” said Governor Larry Hogan, who proposed a record-setting $20.3 million for MSAC in the FY 2017 state budget. “Our dedicated nonprofit arts organizations not only boost our economy, employ thousands of Marylanders, and attract visitors to our state – they also help spur creativity, inspire our children, and contribute to the vibrancy of our communities.”

Maryland’s nonprofit arts sector offers a variety of benefits to the state and its residents. The 14,564 full-time jobs at arts organizations paid $422 million in salaries to local residents, up from $383 million in fiscal 2014. Nonprofit arts generated $54 million in state and local tax revenue, an increase from the previous year, when the arts brought in $49 million in state and local taxes. Every dollar of the operating budgets of arts organizations in the state generated $3.37 in total economic activity.

“With our arts infrastructure continuing to expand, Maryland has become a model for other states looking to use the arts as tool for economic development,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill. “From our Maryland arts programs in schools, to our support of individual artists, to our thriving 24 arts and entertainment districts across the state, we know that investing in the arts is investing in Maryland’s future.”

Key Areas of Growth

Revenues from the nonprofit arts each grew by 10 percent from FY 2014 to FY 2015, while the number of full-time jobs increased by 20 percent. Salaries were also up by 10 percent and state and local tax revenues climbed 11 percent.

The total number of visitors to arts venues, events, classes, and workshops also increased by 11 percent to 9.2 million. Those visitors — 6.5 million of whom attended free events — generated $449 million in direct spending on goods and services, up by 12 percent year-over-year.

The number of organizations that received grants from MSAC also grew from 259 to 299.

Impact by Region

The report also explored the regional economic impact of the arts by dividing the state into six regions. The Central region, which includes Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Carroll, Harford and Howard counties, contributed $642 million in economic impact and supported 7,950 full-time jobs. The Greater Washington region, which includes Frederick, Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties, contributed $418.9 million and supported 5,357 full-time jobs. The Western, Southern, Lower Eastern Shore and Upper Eastern Shore regions contributed a combined $94.3 million and 1,257 full-time jobs.

“As this report demonstrates, the economic contributions of Maryland’s arts sector are consistent and significant. The arts also add immeasurably to the quality of life in our state,” said Shelley Morhaim, chair of the Maryland State Arts Council. “From Western Maryland to the Eastern Shore, Marylanders have access to festivals, museums, concerts, readings, plays, public art, and more. Such dynamic and diverse offerings play a vital role in attracting new residents and businesses to our state.”

About Economic Impact of the Arts FY 2015

Statistics for the study were drawn from 299 Maryland organizations that produce or present the arts around the State, and receive grants from the Maryland State Arts Council for ongoing support of their operations and programs. Data was collected utilizing the Maryland Cultural Data Project. The study did not take into account the economic impact of for-profit arts organizations and the activities of individual visual, performing and literary artists.

About the MSAC

The mission of the Maryland State Arts Council, an agency of the Maryland Department of Commerce, Division of Tourism, Film and the Arts, is to encourage and invest in the advancement of the arts for the people of Maryland. For more information about the Maryland State Arts Council call (410) 767-6555 or TDD/TTY (800) 735-2258 or connect to the MSAC web site at

About Maryland Commerce

The Maryland Department of Commerce stimulates private investment and creates jobs by attracting new businesses, encouraging the expansion and retention of existing companies, and providing financial assistance to Maryland companies. The Department promotes the State’s many economic advantages and markets local products and services at home and abroad to spur economic development and international investment, trade and tourism. Because they are major economic generators, the Department also supports the Arts, film production, sports and other special events. For more information, visit

Karen Glenn Hood
Media Relations and Public Affairs
Maryland Department of Commerce
401 E. Pratt Street, Baltimore, MD 21202
O 410-767-6318 | C 443-463-8129

Leave a Reply