Tourism means business in Maryland

Annapolis, MD - Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford, Comptroller Peter Franchot and Commerce Secretary Michael Gill addressed the nearly 300 tourism industry professionals in Annapolis for the 6th Annual Tourism Day. This one-day advocacy event brings tourism leaders together with elected officials to illustrate the critical economic impact that tourism brings to the state and is sponsored by the Maryland Tourism Coalition (MTC) and the Maryland Association of Destination Marketing Organizations (MDMO).

“Having the Lt. Governor, Comptroller and DBED Secretary make time in their busy schedules during legislative session is a clear sign that Maryland is open for business,” said Kevin Atticks, chairman of MTC and executive director of Grow & Fortify. “The tourism industry spans multiple business sectors including the hotel, restaurant, transportation and attraction industries. Together we are creating jobs, generating revenue and providing a strong economic engine for our state.”

Tourism in Maryland is on the rise, with a 6.1 percent increase in spending from visitors to the state in 2014. The Fiscal Year 2014 Tourism Development Annual Report highlights a variety of performance measures that evaluate the effectiveness of the State’s tourism efforts, as well as the impact the travel and tourism industry has on Maryland’s economy. More than 38.7 million people visited Maryland in 2014 and spent $16.4 billion on travel expenses, based on The Economic Impact of Tourism in Maryland – Calendar Year 2014 Tourism Satellite Account, conducted by Tourism Economics, an Oxford Economics company.

Tourism also generated more than $2.2 billion in state and local taxes in 2014. Without the taxes generated by visitor spending, Maryland households would pay $1,010 more in taxes each year The report also stated that in 2014, tourism was the 10th largest private sector employer in Maryland and was directly responsible for more than 140,288 jobs.

“Tourism continues to generate a return on investment to Maryland tax payers” said MTC Executive Director Wini Roche. “The Governor’s budget provides terrific support for the industry in FY17 and will allow Maryland to compete for visitors.

Tourism Day is a grassroots effort that creates awareness of and demonstrates support for the state tourism promotion funding levels in the FY 2017 budget as well as other legislative issues that affect the well-being of the tourism industry. Every jurisdiction in the state was represented at Tourism Day. More than 75 elected officials attended.

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