Iowa tourism supporters hosted the 24th annual Travel Federation of Iowa Legislative Showcase for Legislators at the Iowa State Fairgrounds on Tuesday evening.
More than 70 communities showcased their attractions, events and businesses to remind the attending Iowa Legislators about the abundance of “Things to Do” in Iowa and how important tourism is to the Iowa economy and employment.
Linda Bacon, executive director of the Newton CVB, and board members Troy Knight and Annette West were among other tourism leaders who visited with legislators to thank them for their past support of tourism development and promotion and to discuss the challenge of finding funds to promote Iowa.
"The Travel Federation of Iowa was pleased again to have the opportunity to showcase the importance and the impact the tourism industry has in the State of Iowa," said Linda Bacon, who is also president of the Travel Federation of Iowa this year. "Our theme 'Tourism Works' truly reflects the fact that tourism is a legitimate industry even though there aren't bricks and mortar. TFI represents all segments of tourism within the state and we're here to continue working for what matters most to all of our partners."
Tourism is Iowa’s eighth largest employer. In 2011, travelers in Iowa generated over $7.2 billion in revenue, 63,400 jobs and a payroll of $1.12 billion at local businesses in communities throughout the state. These dollars in turn, generated $430.2 million in state and local tax receipts for Iowa. Put another way, if not for the tourism industry, each household would have to pay $324 in additional taxes to maintain the current level of state services.