Friday, June 5, 2009

Tourism Leaders Invited to Funding Hearing at 10:30am on Tuesday, June 9

Timing is everything in life, and now is the time to get behind this new legislation aimed to provide funding for Travel Michigan and its award-winning “Pure Michigan” campaign. Every business in Michigan with an interest in tourism is asked to support this initiative by attending the hearing on House Bills 5017 and 5018 at 10:30 am in the House Tourism Committee this Tuesday, June 9th in room 521 of the House Office Building. We need a large presence with representatives from across the tourism industry to show the legislature the importance of funding tourism promotion in Michigan. This year’s advertising campaign is being seen across the nation on a many cable networks, producing great interest in visiting our great State! This is important and we may only have this one time to make a powerful impression on our legislators. All the information you’ll need about these bills is below. Feel free to forward this to anyone in your community who may be interested.


Introduction of “Pure Michigan” Funding Package Hailed by Tourism Industry

Legislation would boost tax revenues - create jobs for Michigan

Lansing, MI – Legislation introduced to provide ongoing funding for the “Pure Michigan” campaign is being applauded by all segments of Michigan’s tourism industry; this state’s third largest industry. The package of bills is considered crucial as the current one-time placement of $30 million in funding is scheduled to drop over 80% to just $5.7 million on October 1st.

The legislative package consisting of two House bills and two Senate bills includes a temporary car rental assessment to be imposed largely on out-of-state visitors (HB 5017) and the creation of a segregated fund (HB 5018) to hold all revenues generated by HB 5017 and the Senate bills.

The Senate bills are designed to set aside sales and use tax revenues from tourism-specific businesses for reinvestment into the “Pure Michigan” campaign. Past studies have shown the State receives an average of $2.86 in new sales tax revenues for every dollar invested into the award-winning promotion campaign. Hearings on the two House bills are scheduled before the House Tourism, Outdoor Recreation and Natural Resources Committee on Tuesday, June 9.

“As Lansing looks to stimulate and grow its economy, Michigan’s tourism industry is our best, and perhaps, only option,” said Steve Yencich, president of the Michigan Lodging & Tourism Association which is spearheading the campaign. “These bills will create new tax revenues and jobs that are simply not feasible in other industries such as manufacturing. That makes passage of the Pure Michigan funding package an important key to Michigan’s economic future. We applaud the House’s leadership on this issue, and hope the Senate will take prompt action as well.”

Here's a brief description, along with a link to each of the actual bills.

HB 5017 - (Representative Woodrow Stanley, D-Flint, et all)

Places a $2.50 per day assessment on car rentals, primarily near airports, train deports, bus stations, etc. Michigan insurance consumers are exempt from the assessment, which is largely paid by travelers coming from outside of Michigan. Assessment revenues will provide short-term funding for Pure Michigan (75% tourism promotion) and Upper Hand (25% business promotion)campaigns. The assessment sunsets after a defined period of time, making this a temporary car rental assessment.

HB 5018 (Representative David Nathan, D-Detroit, et al)

Creates a special fund within the State's General Fund to receive revenues raised by HB 5017, SB 619, and SB 620 to be used to fund tourism and business promotion, (Pure Michigan 75% and Upper Hand 25%).

SB 619 (Allen, R-Traverse City)
Captures use tax revenue from tourism-specific businesses to provide long-term funding of the Pure Michigan and Upper Hand campaigns.

SB 620 (Jason Allen, R-Traverse City)

Captures sales tax revenue from tourism-specific businesses to provide long-term funding of the Pure Michigan and Upper Hand campaigns.

HB 5018 and HB 5019 will be up for hearings at 10:30 am in the House Tourism Committee on this Tuesday, June 9th in room 521 of the House Office Building.

If you support the Pure Michigan Funding Package - make plans to attend!

Please direct any questions to:

Steve Yencich, CAE
Michigan Lodging and Tourism Association
3815 W. St. Joseph Hwy. Suite A200
Lansing, MI 48917
(517) 267-8989
(517) 267-8990 (fax)
Visit our new site at
Serving Michigan's Lodging & Tourism Industries

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