The impact of the Texas' $27 billion shortfall is still taking shape. In recent weeks, the Texas Commission on the Arts has been reeling with the results of a budget slashed in half.
"We had a partnership with the Texas Education Agency, where we highlighted art work by public school students throughout the state," TCA Executive Director, Gary Gibbs said.
Gibbs says the student art promoting program is one of many to hit the chopping block.
"I do wish it were different, but I realize the reality that the state faced this time," Gibbs said.
While a 56 percent budget cut may sound massive, Gibbs knows it could have been much worse.
"Let's suspend non-mission-critical entities like the historical commission or the commission on the arts until the economy improves," Gov. Rick Perry said during his February 8 State of the State address.
Lawmakers spent months contemplating whether to shutter the commission, but it survived, in part.
Over the last few weeks the commission cut its staff from 18 to 12 employees.
"These are employees that have been at the agency for 8 years, 13 years," Gibbs said. "It's difficult to see your friends and colleagues leave."
The impact of budget cuts will be felt far beyond the walls of the TCA. The commission awards about 1,500 grants a year to organizations like the Mexic-Arte Museum in Austin.
Executive Director, Sylvia Orozco says the group will likely have to cut back on some of its art education programs in the community.
"The reason we have those programs is because the school doesn't have those programs, and because they have been cut in the arts," Orozco said.
Despite what seems to be a cash crisis for the arts, people in the industry remain optimistic.
"We're creative and we're gonna manage," Orozco said. " We're not going away by any means."
TAC wasn't the only state agency to take a major hit. The Texas Historical Commission is also coping with a 50 percent budget cut.
Reporter: Jennifer Black