BOISE More than $5 million awarded for Idaho tourism promotion
During its meeting held in McCall the first week of August, the Idaho Travel Council (ITC) granted more than $5 million in tourism marketing funding to non-profit organizations through the Idaho Regional Travel and Convention Grant Program.
Eligible award recipients include non-profit local and regional tourism development organizations such as chambers of commerce, and convention and visitors bureaus. The organizations use their awarded grant dollars to promote cities, towns and regions of the state as tourist destinations. Program elements are varied, but often include print and digital advertising, brochures, attendance at travel shows, public relations, direct mail, industry research, and the creation of web sites.
“Growing Idaho’s economy by attracting business and leisure travelers throughout the state is the goal of the Idaho Tourism and the Idaho Travel Council,” said Idaho Commerce Director Megan Ronk. “We are thrilled to be able to put so much money back into the communities to help with their local marketing efforts. Every marketing dollar helps spread the word that Idaho is a great destination for recreation.”
Fiscal Year 2018 grant award recipients in Region 2 include:
•Hells Canyon VB dba Visit Lewis Clark Valley, $80,000
•Kamiah Chamber of Commerce, $47,750
•Moscow Chamber of Commerce, $70,000
•North Central Idaho Travel Association (NCITA), $20,000
•Orofino Chamber of Commerce, $16,000
•Salmon River Chamber of Commerce (Riggins), $36,000
Tourism is a more than $4 billion industry in Idaho. Idaho Department of Commerce – Tourism Development activities are funded by a 2 percent tax, paid by travelers and collected by the state’s hotel, motel, vacation rental and private campground owners. Forty-five percent of the funds are used for statewide programs targeted to international and domestic consumers, tour operators, travel agents, and travel journalists. Another 45 percent is distributed back to communities through the grant program. The remaining 10 percent is used for administration of the tourism development division.
Total lodging tax collections for fiscal year 2017 were $11,215,851, an increase of 12.42 percent higher than the previous year.