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State Tourism Agency Could Get Financial Help

visityakima.com

After eliminating the state tourism office in 2011, Washington lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow those in the private sector to pick up the slack.

Washington is currently the only state without a state-funded tourism office. In the surrounding states and Canada, from $7 million to upward of $60 million a year is spent marketing to visitors. The Washington Tourism Alliance says the state can’t adequately compete on its current budget of about $1 million a year from the dues of about 440 members across the state and short-term funding from the Legislature.

Under House Bill 2229, money to support tourism marketing and promotion throughout the state would come from the tourism industry in five key areas; lodging, food service, attractions and entertainment, retail and transportation.

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