Macon-Bibb arts and culture industry generates millions of dollars, thousands of jobs Test

Amy Schwartz Moretti and Steve Moretti performed at the 2017 Arts Advocacy Breakfast on Thursday. (Emily Swecker/ WGXA)

MACON, Ga. -- The results are in and studies show that the arts are not a charity, but an industry of their own.

A national economic impact study conducted during fiscal year 2015 shows that the arts and culture industry generates over $88 million and supports more than 3,000 jobs each year.

Steven Fulbright, Macon Arts Alliance board chair, says the amount of money being spent on the arts is helping Macon-Bibb thrive.

"Also the volunteer hours that go into creating these events is remarkable, equates over 4,000 jobs which is really amazing if you consider events like Bragg Jam which is complete volunteer born and how many people they bring into our community and the spending that it equates to and economic development," Fulbright said.

An additional $38 million is also spent by audiences at local businesses, on parking, and in hotels.

"They also will go to dinner, they might go get their hair done. The arts organizations themselves spend money on design work, printing. The theater might buy a can of paint from a local hardware store which helps create a job," Fulbright said.