- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 31, 2017

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - The Mississippi Arts Commission is on track to survive as a stand-alone state agency.

Two bills that died Tuesday proposed dissolving the Arts Commission into Mississippi Development Authority.

The change was pushed by Republican Gov. Phil Bryant, who said arts promotion should be handled by the agency that pursues jobs and promotes tourism.

Arts advocates said the change would hurt a small-budget commission that has a big impact on artists and students.

Tuesday was the deadline for House and Senate committees to consider general bills filed in each chamber.

Senate Bill 2611 failed when it wasn’t debated in the Senate Appropriations Committee.

House Bill 1325 passed one committee but died when it wasn’t debated in House Appropriations.

It’s unclear whether other bills could be rewritten later to dissolve the commission.

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