Kim Hufham, President/CEO of the New Hanover County Tourism Development Authority, announced today that the North Carolina Division of Tourism, Film and Sports Development released the estimated county-by-county tourism economic impact statistics for 2009.
The “2009 Economic Impact of Travel on North Carolina Counties” study was prepared for the North Carolina Division of Tourism, Film and Sports Development by the U.S Travel Association. The study reveals that in the year 2009 the economic impact from domestic travel in New Hanover County was estimated at $390.38 million. This number represents a -7.6% decrease over revised 2008 revenues. Despite the decrease, New Hanover County maintains its rank as number 8 among North Carolina's 100 counties in tourism expenditures.
According to the study, in 2009 Travel and Tourism in New Hanover County provided more than 5,200 jobs and supported a payroll of $92.31 million. Travel and Tourism also generated $35.96 million in state and local tax receipts. Travel-generated state and local tax revenues saved each New Hanover County resident approximately $185.27.
“To keep the -7.6% decrease in tourism expenditures in perspective, we must consider that 2009 was the most difficult year in decades for the tourism industry. Ninety-four of North Carolina’s 100 counties witnessed a decrease in tourism expenditures. New Hanover County’s decrease in visitor expenditures are in line with the state’s overall decrease of -7.4%” states Kim Hufham, President/CEO of the New Hanover County Tourism Development Authority (TDA). “The fact that New Hanover County maintained its ranking is encouraging. We are further encouraged that increases in room occupancy tax collections were posted for the months of March, April, May and June; the first time an increase has been posted for four consecutive months in more than two years. Collectively, the first six months of 2010 show a +0.74% increase. While it’s still too early to predict how 2010 will fare overall, we are hopeful that these are indications that the local tourism industry is stabilizing.”
Travel and Tourism is an important economic generator that infuses millions of new dollars into our local economy each year. Travel and Tourism is also among the state’s fastest growing industries. Governor Beverly Perdue announced in March that domestic and international visitors to and within North Carolina spent $15.6 billion in 2009, a decrease of
-7.4% percent from 2008. Even as the nationwide economy slipped further into the recession, North Carolina maintained its rank as the sixth most visited state in the U.S.
The New Hanover County Tourism Development Authority d/b/a Wilmington/Cape Fear Coast Convention & Visitors Bureau is the official destination marketing organization that stimulates economic development through the promotion of travel and tourism.
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