Destinations Wisconsin applauds Governor Evers for allocating $15 million in Amercia Rescue Plan Act dollars to a grant program for destination marketing organizations.
The additional stimulus dollars will allow these organizations to continue recovering from the devastating impact that COVID-19 has had on many of them. They have faced devastating budget shortfalls, more than $11 million for 2020, due to the sharp decline in room taxes which is their primary funding source. These additional funds will allow them to bring back staff, promote tourism in their destinations, and operate their visitor centers.
“We are grateful that Governor Evers and the Wisconsin Department of Tourism recognizes the enormous value Wisconsin destination marketing organizations bring to their communities and tourism partners," Executive Director Julia Hertel said. "These funds will help Wisconsin's tourism economy rebound more quickly."
Destinations Wisconsin is comprised of 40 destination marketing organizations (convention and visitor bureaus, chambers of commerce and other tourism entities) that work together to drive destination economic impact, job creation and enhanced quality of life through tourism. The organization was formed in 1993 and partners with the Wisconsin Department of Tourism to promote the state as a meetings and convention destination and sporting events destination. The organization hosts the annual Wisconsin Fall Tourism Conference, serves as a member of the Tourism Federation of Wisconsin (the state tourism industry’s advocacy coalition), and is a member of Destinations International.