Alexander Says Tourism Bill Will Help Protect Tennessee’s $14 Billion Tourism Industry, Nearly 185,000 Jobs

Legislation Will Promote Travel to United States, Boost Economy

Posted on September 9, 2009

U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said today that the Travel Promotion Act, of which he is a cosponsor, that passed the Senate today will help promote international travel to the United States. “Tourism brings over $14 billion to the Tennessee economy every year and accounts for nearly 185,000 jobs in our state, according to the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development,” Alexander said. “This legislation will help boost tourism by encouraging more international travelers to come see our beautiful landmarks, like the Great Smoky Mountains, and come hear the blues in Memphis and country music in Nashville.” The Travel Promotion Act of 2009—which passed the Senate by a vote of 79 to 19 and is supported by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce—will encourage international travel to all regions of the United States by: • Establishing a nationally coordinated travel promotion program to promote travel to the United States. • Creating the Corporation for Travel Promotion, an independent, non-profit corporation governed by an 11-member board of directors appointed by the Secretary of Commerce. It also creates an Office of Travel Promotion in the Department of Commerce to develop programs to increase the number of international visitors to the United States. • Setting up a Travel Promotion Fund, financed by a public-private matching program. Federal contributions will be financed by a $10 fee paid by foreign travelers from Visa Waiver countries.