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Tourists bring millions of dollars in tax revenue to our City, and they also have a major impact on City operations and resources, as well as our economy as a whole. How should we best manage the tax dollars generated by tourism to benefit our community?
Austin welcomes thousands of tourists each year, and those tourists pump significant amounts of tax dollars directly into City coffers. Those tourists also have a significant impact on City resources. We’re trying to determine the right ways to invest tax money contributed by tourists back into the City. The Visitor Impact Task Force (appointed by the Austin City Council) is currently meeting (through the spring) to discuss how the City of Austin should use hotel occupancy tax funds paid by tourists. The task force will make recommendations to the City Council about how to best utilize all hotel occupancy revenue to impact tourism by May 31, 2017. This feedback could greatly influence their recommendations. 
AIBA has been attending the Task Force meetings to make sure local business is seen as the tourist attraction we are. We’ve been presenting a series focused on the impact local business has on tourism. Local business owners know the impact tourism has on their business. AIBA is proposing that a very small portion of the hotel occupancy revenue be dedicated to AIBA for the purpose of promoting local business to tourists. We want to see those tourism dollars going in your door and not a chain or big box. Please support AIBA in this effort. Would you please take a minute to comment on the city’s speak Up Austin website on this issue?