STATEHOUSE (Feb. 12, 2019) – The Indiana House of Representatives voted in support of legislation co-authored by State Rep. Stephen Bartels (R-Eckerty) to increase state tourism and its economic impact.
Bartels said House Bill 1115 would establish the Indiana Destination Development Corp. as a joint public-private funded agency to replace the Office of Tourism Development. The corporation would assume all the office’s responsibilities, and be tasked with marketing and attracting more visitors to the state.
“Indiana has the ability to grow tremendously in the tourism industry, and with this legislation we would be able to generate more strategies for economic growth,” Bartels said. “I believe this public-private partnership will allow for creative thinking and an innovative vision to further promote Indiana tourism.”
According to Bartels, funding for tourism development would no longer be solely a state responsibility. The new corporation would raise its own funds to revitalize the marketing of Indiana travel and help the industry become more competitive on the national level.
“Tourism in our state is a $12 billion industry, which has a huge economic impact on job creation and quality of life,” Bartels said. “State tourism is responsible for 5 percent of all Hoosier jobs, so it’s crucial that we market our assets and obtain more resources to continue attracting visitors.”
The Indiana Destination Development Corp. would be led by a board of seven members, including the governor or their designee, the president of the Indiana Economic Development Corp. or their designee, and five members from the private sector tourism industry appointed by the governor.
State Rep. Stephen Bartels (R-Eckerty) represents House District 74,
which includes portions of Crawford, Dubois, Orange, Perry and Spencer counties.
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