Tourism Promotion Bill Becomes Law
Equine tourism is a growing and diverse segment of the horse industry. Because it encompasses many parts of the industry including recreation, showing and racing its continued growth will be beneficial to the entire horse industry. If equine tourism in the U.S. is to expand it is important that the United States promote its tourism industry abroad.
Travel Promotion Act of 2009
On May 12, 2009 Senator Byron Dorgan (D-SD) Introduced the Travel Promotion Act of 2009 (S.1023) Congressman Bill Delahunt introduced the House version of this bill (H.R.2935) on July 23, 2009. This bill could benefit tourism involving the horse industry and is similar to legislation passed by the House of Representatives last year.
The purpose of the bill is to market the U.S. as a tourist destination to people around the world through a new non-profit Corporation for Travel Promotion. This corporation would be responsible for correcting misperceptions regarding U.S entry policies, and providing useful information to foreign tourists and others interested in traveling to the United States.
The bill requires the Corporation for Travel Promotion to “identify opportunities and strategies to promote tourism to rural and urban areas equally.” A travel promotion fund requiring non-federal matching funds would also be established.
The bill would also authorize the creation of an Office of Travel Promotion in the Department of Commerce. This office would support and encourage the development of programs to increase the number of international visitors to the United States. In general this office would be responsible for disseminating information to international visitors about U.S. entry procedures. Additionally it would collect data on the number of international visitors to each State and support State, regional, and private sector initiatives to promote travel to and within the United States.
This bill was signed into law March 4th, 2010
This bill could benefit all segments of the horse industry through promotion of American equine tourism abroad and increase the number of international visitors to the U.S. who participate in equestrian events and activities.
The AHC supported this legislation.