At the annual Tourism Day at the Capitol, new visitor spending numbers from 2011 will be showcased - which the tourism office says were a 9.2 percent increase over 2010. It says visitors spent nearly $16 billion in 2011.
"It was really great news in this weak economy," Al White, the director of the Colorado Tourism Office, said.
White also says the new "Come to Life" advertising campaign, which started in April 2012, generated a $200 return for every dollar of state money spent. He says the campaign generated nearly $900 million in incremental-visitor expenditures, after costing the state only $4.5 million.
White and others are hoping to convince lawmakers the industry is a great economic engine in the still weak economy.
"Often times lawmaker struggle with the decisions they have to make on where money is spent," White said. "My message to them is 'You give me a buck, I will give you $6 or $7 in return for programs that you deem valuable.'"
The tourism office says in 2011, $879 million in state and local taxes came from visitor spending.
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