There’s a chance of snow in the forecast across Michigan for the next few days. A new Pure Michigan ad is called “Chance of Snow,” too, but deep-pocketed skiers across the country can only see the ad online…
Throughout the fall political campaigns, as the Center for Michigan hosted debates across the state, we asked candidates what was more important – funding film incentives, funding Pure Michigan, or cutting both programs so Michigan could cut taxes? The response was almost universal. Every candidate but one said to fund Pure Michigan.
It’s sickening to have to repeat for the umpteenth time the economic logic for Pure Michigan, but here it is, courtesy of the Michigan Lodging and Tourism Association…
“A Longwoods International report released Feb. 4 said the summer 2009 Pure Michigan national ad campaign motivated 680,000 new trips to Michigan from outside the Great Lakes region. Those visitors spent $250 million at Michigan businesses last summer and paid $17.5 million in state taxes. The national campaign which aired ads in all 50 states generated $2.23 in revenues for every $1 spent on the ads, Longwoods concluded. Longwoods also measured the impact of Pure Michigan summer 2009 advertising on residents of regional markets — Chicago, Cleveland, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus, St. Louis, Milwaukee, and Ontario. Longwoods found the regional campaign improved its return on investment to Michigan from $2.86 in 2004 to $5.34 in 2009.”
Fully funding a national ad campaign like that costs $30 million – an amount the outgoing Legislature has been unable to locate throughout 2010, despite uniform pleading from newspaper editorial pages, dozens of tourism industry leaders, and readers of this newsletter who have sent piles of emails to Lansing.
For those reasons, the Traverse City Record-Eagle recently called this “one of the most do-nothing Legislatures in Michigan’s long history of do-nothing Legislatures.”
In all likelihood, the House and Senate will adjourn for the holidays without taking up the Pure Michigan question again, as the Detroit News reported this morning.
So, the ads remain dark. Too many hotel rooms will remain dark.
Our representatives and senators turned out the lights.
But there is an easy fix come January.
The $30 million needed to run Pure Michigan amounts to less than four-tenths of one percent of the state’s always-overburdened general fund budget of about $8.2 billion.
Fully paying for Pure Michigan would cost less than $4 out of every $1,000 in the general fund.
Those would-be legislators nodded in unison on the campaign trail – Pure Michigan was the one government program with Pure Support.
“The ‘Pure Michigan’ marketing campaign is a prime example of a government program that provides great value to the state, returning more than two dollars for every one dollar of taxpayer investment,” Gov.-elect Rick Snyder said back in early October on the campaign trail. “Pure Michigan is helping to boost the tourism industry and create jobs – it’s a program we need to keep.”
It’s an easy campaign promise for all involved to deliver on in January.
Here, let’s give ‘em a little push.
Contact the following incoming leaders and tell them now is the time to support Pure Michigan…