Tourism means jobs, spending
The tourism industry is big business in West Virginia, employing nearly 45,000 people and generating $4.14 billion in direct-travel spending. But not only is it big business statewide, it also greatly impacts the Huntington area and Cabell and Wayne counties.
Cabell County alone benefits with 1,450 jobs related to tourism in our county, $119.8 million in direct tourist spending and $10.06 million in state and local taxes plus an additional $1.68 million in revenue that is exclusively local.
West Virginia Legislators could spur greater economic impact by supporting Gov. Jim Justice’s plan to increase tourism marketing dollars by $14 million in West Virginia. More visitors coming here means more spending, more tax revenues and more jobs in the industry. Of course there are other issues that require attention as well. There always will be. But by increasing the tourism marketing dollars, we will be increasing tourism income, which can then be used to offset these other issues.
West Virginia is the best kept secret in the nation. We can do our part to change that by advertising and competing with other states in our region that have advertising budgets exponentially higher than ours, e.g., Ohio $42 million, Pennsylvania $40.8 million, Virginia $22.9 million and Kentucky $9.2 million, to name a few. West Virginia is only $4.1 million. Can you imagine what an additional $14 million will do for our state and local economy? …
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