House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz’s Blue Ribbon Panel on Tourism have delivered their report to the CT Legislature's Commerce Committee.
- Divert 25% of hotel bed tax revenues to the Arts, Culture and Tourism Fund
- Not further increase the bed tax after it goes to 17% next year
- Appoint an Arts, Culture and Tourism Commissioner reporting to the Governor
- Fund the 5 existing regional DMOs plus a Convention and Sports Bureau
- Reopen the welcome centers (restrooms 24/7)
- Appoint a CT tourism rebranding committee
Per CT DECD, tourism in CT is a $14.7B industry supporting 83,000 jobs and producing $1.7B in tax revenues. Critics of how the Legislature has been handling tourism promotion say funding has decreased every year for the past 8 years.
Will these recommendations fly? Will they make a difference? Stay tuned for updates.