Tourism Tax Revenue In Georgia Increases
Tourism continues to bring much needed revenue into the peach state and local leaders say Middle Georgia is contributing its share.
The state generated more than $1.2 billion in state tax revenue from tourism related expenditures in 2011. Macon-Bibb County contributed more than $8,000,000 to that number.
"The more that we can contribute to the local tax revenue, the more things in turn can get done in the city to bring more visitors,” Macon-Bibb County Convention Bureau Communications Manager, Valerie Bradley said.
Visitors that have been coming to the state are seeing more than just peaches. The state recently released the 2013 travel guide that has dual covers. One pictures Zac Brown from the country music group The Zac Brown Band. The other shows the city of Senoia that has been the backdrop for more than 25 movies and television shows including "The Walking Dead."
"I know they are focusing on entertainment, the state is focusing on that with various movie productions and television productions that are filming around the state,” Bradley said.
Last year, Clint Eastwood's "Trouble with the Curve" and the Jackie Robinson movie "42" filmed in Macon. While the city has its fair share of the spotlight, Macon film commissioners said there's a reason Hollywood keeps returning to Georgia.
"We already have great tax incentives for the state,” Macon Film Commissioner, Cindy Hill said. “We're one of the few states that hold on to our tax incentives for the music industry and for the film industry and basically what that does is make it way more affordable for people to come here and shoot movies than they can in LA or New York."
As Georgia keeps luring Hollywood productions in, Bradley said she looks forward to the tourism it can generate not only in the state but the county.
"We're excited about the recent events and movies that have filmed here and also television shows as well."
The state ranks seventh in the nation in both travel generated employment and expenditures. It is second in the southeast behind Florida.