Governor Gary Herbert wants Utah to spend $22.5 million for the Tourism Marketing Performance Fund, focused primarily on drawing tourist to parts of rural Utah outside of the so-called "Mighty Five" National Parks.
Today a number of industry and government tourism boosters gathered in the rotunda of the state capitol building, to convince lawmakers to go along with the Governor's proposal.
"We did a great job with our Mighty Five, now maybe we ought to work on the Mighty 43," Herbert said, referring to Utah's 43 state parks.
The State Office of Tourism reports $8.4 billion in economic impact from tourism in Utah. $1.28 billion of that goes directly into state and local taxes.
"If you didn't have the tourism economy, every household in Utah would have to generate 12 hundred dollars more in taxes," said Vicki Varela, Director of the Utah Office of Tourism.