For many Kansans the past eighteen months have been wrought with disappointment and fear for the arts, but now there is a new hope on the horizon: the Creative Arts Commission. As discussed in The Future of the Arts in Kansas, debate over funding of the arts has been a hot topic ever since Governor Brownback cut all funding for the Kansas Arts Commission in 2011. In April 2012 the Kansas State Senate voted in the new Creative Arts Commission and under pressure from the people of Kansas, the Governor approved $700,000 needed in funding for the commission.
The Creative Industries Commission will house the Kansas Arts Commission and the Kansas Film Commission. Its role as the Kansas Arts Commission will be to support non-profit arts organizations through grants, professional development, and other programs. It will support individual artists as well as communities. Also, in its new capacity, the commission will work within the arts, education, and business communities to foster an atmosphere of learning and creativity in education as well as develop and retain businesses that prosper in creative populations. The commission also intends to promote Kansas as the creative hub of the United States.
The arts are an important part of the Kansas economy, bringing $153.5 million dollars annually into the state and providing over 4,000 full-time jobs.