Southeast Tourism Society
ATLANTA, Ga. (May 5, 2011) - Tourism equals economic development.
That is the straightforward message the Southeast Tourism Society plans to take to Washington, D.C., during its May 11-12 STS Grassroots Congressional Summit.
Representatives for the 12 STS states, which stretch from West Virginia to Florida to Arkansas and Louisiana, have scheduled individual and group meetings with members of Congress in cooperation with the National Tour Association, a leading trade organization in the group tour industry.
"Many members of Congress understand the impact of tourism, but there are many who don't. Also, there are many new members and their staffers who need an introduction to the tourism industry and an explanation of how federal policies affect tourism," said STS President and CEO Bill Hardman.
Hardman said the grassroots group has three major messages:
• Most tourism businesses are small businesses that are well positioned to create new jobs.
• Domestic tourism growth produces new revenue that can help the national economy continue its recovery.
• Inbound international tourism is a major U.S. export and another means to spur economic growth and decrease the federal deficit.
"Congress can do many things that affect tourism, both helpful and harmful. Our goal is to make sure Congress considers tourism as it makes policy," Hardman.
Tourism is the largest, second largest or third largest industry in each of the Southeast Tourism Society's states.
About Southeast Tourism Society (STS)
Founded in 1983, the Southeast Tourism Society (www. southeasttourism.org) is dedicated to the promotion and development of tourism in its member states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. Its headquarters are in Atlanta. The membership includes state travel offices, attractions, hotels, motels, resorts, convention and visitors bureaus, chambers of commerce, travel media and other travel-related organizations.