State lawmakers are a step closer to keeping a highly visible travel advertising program going.
Pure Michigan went national this year for the first time with ads that ran on nationwide cable TV for months.
The Michigan House has approved a $30 million funding bill to keep Pure Michigan going.
The measure creates a permanent, self-sustaining funding source so Pure Michigan won’t have to go begging again.
Travel experts say it makes a difference.
Pat Black of the Marquette Country Convention & Visitors Bureau says if you looked at license plates on vehicles around Marquette County this summer, you would have seen people that drove in from places that you wouldn’t have noticed before.
She says it turned out to be a strong summer locally for tourism, and she credits the Pure Michigan ads for that.
The head of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation visited the U.P. last week.
He said every dollar put into Pure Michigan generates more than $40 for Michigan businesses.
Black says each dollar also brings in $3 in tax revenue, and she says that’s the difference between spending money and investing it.
When UGN News spoke with MEDC chief Greg Main, he told us he was worried about Pure Michigan’s future.
At the time, the legislature hadn’t come up with a way to fund it yet.
The Pure Michigan funding bill is now on its way to the state Senate.