For Immediate Release
Friday, Feb. 26, 2016
Contact: Jason Stanford (512) 978-2153
“This marks a new era in Austin’s music history.” -Gavin Garcia, chair of the Austin Music Foundation
MAYOR ADLER INTRODUCES AUSTIN MUSIC & CREATIVE ECOSYSTEM OMNIBUS RESOLUTION
Today Mayor Steve Adler introduced the Austin Music & Creative Ecosystem Omnibus Resolution. The resolution directs the City Manager to examine the feasibility of many specific ideas to help the local music industry and arts sector and return in 90 days with a prioritized action plan.
“Austin won’t be the Live Music Capital of the World for much longer if we keep losing musicians and music venues, and the struggles that the local music industry is facing are also being faced by the entire creative ecosystem. That’s why today I’m offering creative ideas to help the creative class in Austin,” said Mayor Adler. “We’re going to need all our creativity, ingenuity, and vision to deal with the crisis that faces the musicians and artists alike who are getting priced out of homes and studio space. The work they are producing is as vibrant as ever, but this city has never been more unaffordable for them. And what do we ultimately gain if we get another weekend of the ACL Festival but we lose another Liberty Lunch?”
“The Mayor said he would fulfill a vision for the music and the arts, and with this resolution he is realizing that goal,” said Gavin Garcia, chair of the Austin Music Commission. “This marks a new era in Austin’s music history, one long anticipated.”
“Mayor Adler’s resolution lays out ideas that we’ve been needing for years and recognizes that a healthy and thriving arts community is necessary for a healthy and thriving city,” said Lulu Flores, chair of the Austin Arts Commission.
“Austin wouldn’t be Austin without our local music and arts community, but we’re losing our artists because Austin is becoming too unaffordable. We’ve been making plans long enough. Now it’s time to make progress,” said Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo (D-9), a co-sponsor of the resolution.
“The affordability crisis is affecting everyone, and the local music industry is no exception. I’m supporting this resolution because we can’t call ourselves the Live Music Capital of the World if musicians can’t afford to live here and the venues can’t afford to stay open. My proposal for Entertainment Licenses is just one of the many common-sense ideas we need to put into action to help the local music industry,” said Council Member Sabino “Pio” Renteria (D-3), a co-sponsor of the resolution.
“Our local artists and musicians aren’t just economically important to Austin. They’re a key part of who we are as a city. As Austin becomes unaffordable to musicians, artists, and venues, we lose something much more than jobs. This resolution signals that our new Mayor and City Council are serious about fighting for this vital part of Austin’s spirit,” said Council Member Gregorio Casar (D-4), who is co-sponsoring the resolution.
This week, a report commissioned by Austin Music People and conducted by local firm TXP Inc. showed that “year-round economic activity by local artists, venues and businesses” fell 15 percent from 2010 to 2014, from $856 million to $726 million. Austin also lost 1,200 jobs in the local music industry over the same period despite steady job growth over all.
According to the Economic Impact of Music 2016 Study, the collective impact of music and music-related tourism accounted for just over $1.8 billion in annual economic activity, supporting over 21,000 jobs and producing almost $40 million in City of Austin tax revenue.
A 2012 report entitled The Economic Impact of the Creative Sector in Austin pegged the overall economic output of the creative sector, including music, film, gaming, not-for-profit, visual arts, music tourism, and other tourism, at $4.4 billion. Within that over all total, the visual arts accounted for $283.8 million and 3,851 jobs.