Douglas budget contains additional $850,000 for marketing Vermont as tourist destination

first_imgOfficials in the tourism and hospitality industry said they were pleased that the alternative budget approach proposed by Governor Jim Douglas contains an additional $850,000 to market the state. With the summer tourism season unofficially kicking off over Memorial Day Weekend, Tourism and Marketing Commissioner Bruce Hyde said the money couldn t come at a better time. Tourism is one of the largest industries in our state, and spending on promoting Vermont is an investment in job creation and retention, Hyde said. Our recent economic impact study showed that visitor spending in Vermont supported approximately 37,000 jobs for Vermonters.He noted that there were roughly 60,000 jobs in the hospitality and entertainment sector in Vermont, spread out in literally every county of the state, and visitor spending contributed $206.9 million in tax and fee revenues to state coffers in the General, Education and Transportation Funds. A strong tourism economy is vital to Vermont, and marketing the state as a travel destination benefits us all, said Ed Stahl, executive director of the Stowe Area Association. Lamoille County is very dependant on tourism for total revenue, so we re very encouraged that the Governor is appropriating a total of $1.35 million to promote Vermont. This is an investment that we will see a return on many times over.Kelly Pawlak, general manager of Mount Snow Resort, agreed. The Mount Snow Valley relies heavily on tourism, and the news about additional funding to market Vermont is music to our ears, she said.  Vermont has such a strong brand, so this decision will show a quick return on investment.  Visitors are looking for affordable and drive-to vacations right now, and Vermont really fits the bill. These additional funds will help showcase all we have to offer.  Hyde said that while officials were optimistic about the upcoming summer tourism season, the state would be competing for scarce visitor spending with other states boasting far larger marketing budgets, and that the department planned to make some funding available for local chambers of commerce, with the state and chambers splitting the cost as a 50-50 match. Using the federal stimulus money to boost our tourism sector is just good economic development, Hyde said. The Legislature s plan to spend $500,000 is a good start, but the Governor s proposal of $1.35 million is a significant increase that will really have an impact on bringing visitors and their money to Vermont.Visitors to the Green Mountain State spent more than $1.61 billion for goods and services in 2007, according to a recent study prepared by Economic and Policy Resources (EPR) of Williston that measures the impact of visitor spending on the Vermont economy.The complete report is available online on the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing s industry Web site at www.VermontPartners.org(link is external). www.vermontvacation.com(link is external).Source: Governor’s Officelast_img read more

Continue reading

New conspiracy charge filed against three individuals implicated in major passport scam

first_imgLocalNews New conspiracy charge filed against three individuals implicated in major passport scam by: – January 31, 2012 Share Share Share (L-R): Lindon Marie and Nash Mitchel. Photo credit: thedominican.netThree individuals, who were charged for their alleged involvement in a major passport scam in Dominica last year, were brought before the Magistrate’s Court in Roseau on Tuesday as another charge was filed against them.In May, 2011 Nash Mitchel of Soufriere, Lindon Marie of River Street and Kimana James of Castle Comfort were charged and remanded at the State’s Prison for their alleged involvement in a passport scam. Mitchel and Marie were granted bail several days later in the sum of $75,000 each with two sureties as well as strict reporting conditions by the High Court while James who was ill at the time was granted $30, 000.00 bail by the Magistrate’s Court.When they appeared before Magistrate Candia Carette-George on Tuesday, an additional charge of conspiracy was read to the Defendants which stated that between November 2nd, 2005 and September 2006 the Defendants did conspire with persons unknown to obtain 11birth certificates of the Commonwealth of Dominica for foreign nationals.Kimana James. Photo credit: thedominican.netThe Defendants were not required to plead as the charge is an indictable offense, however both Mitchel and Marie had to be bailed again as their first bail application was granted at the High Court. Magistrate Carette-George explained that the Magistrate Court did not have jurisdiction to continue an application of the High Court.Wayne Norde, attorney representing Ms James asked the Court that bail be continued in the same terms and conditions as new charge filed has arrived out of the same matter to which the Court acceded.Bernard Marie, father of Lindon Marie stood as his surety and described his son as “an exceptional son, very respectful and loving child” noting that he has sufficient control over him to ensure that he attends Court proceedings. He was granted bail in the sum of $50, 000.00 without any bail conditions but warned to abide by the previous reporting conditions set by the High Court; which is to report to the police station three times per week.Mitchel whose mother and brother stood as his sureties in June 2011 were not present in Court and he was asked to find them or an alternative surety to secure his bail.His lawyer, Zena Moore-Dyer was late for Court but he informed Magistrate Carette-George that he would contact his brother.Dominica Vibes Newscenter_img 77 Views   no discussions Sharing is caring! Tweetlast_img read more

Continue reading