To create jobs in communities across the country and strengthen the American tourism industry, a group of U.S. Senators today introduced the Travel Regional Investment Partnership (TRIP) Act. The TRIP Act will promote domestic tourism by partnering public and private dollars through a competitive matching grant program within the U.S. Department of Commerce.
Tourism supports over seven million domestic jobs and accounts for 2.8% of the United States' gross domestic product. The TRIP Act will grow the industry by allowing local destination marketing organizations such as convention and visitors' bureaus to partner with other regional tourism entities such as parks or resorts to put together a proposal for a matching grant.
The legislation has been introduced by U.S. Senator Mark Begich (D -- Alaska) and is co-sponsored by Senators Chuck Schumer (D -- N.Y.), Mark Pryor (D -- Ark.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D -- N.Y.), and Amy Klobuchar (D -- Minn.) who co-chairs the Senate Tourism Caucus.
"I have long believed tourism is one of our greatest renewable resources. Visitors add billions of dollars to our economy each year and support thousands of Alaska jobs," said Senator Begich. "By enhancing public and private investment in destination marketing, we can create jobs and grow a vital American industry -- one that is immensely important to Alaska."
"New York is chock full of first-rate tourist destinations that attract visitors, and their tourism dollars, each and every year," Senator Schumer said. "This sector of our economy is a proven job creator, and the TRIP Act would help us build on that success. The TRIP Act would help New York museums, parks, and a host of other tourist destinations make critical investments in their infrastructure, helping them grow for years to come."
"Regional partnerships often have successful results when it comes to economic development," Senator Pryor said. "The TRIP Act is a smart way to encourage these partnerships and maximize available resources to increase domestic tourism."
"Minnesota is a diverse state that has an abundance of travel and vacation opportunities," said Senator Klobuchar. "This bill will strengthen local economies by bringing businesses together to promote tourism in communities throughout Minnesota and across the country."
"From world class vineyards in the Finger Lakes to Niagara Falls to the beautiful Adirondacks and all the attractions of New York City, there is absolutely no place better to vacation than New York," said Senator Gillibrand. "Visitors add billions of dollars to our state's economy each year and support thousands of jobs right here at home. Many New Yorkers get their very first job in the tourism industry. As we rebuild our economy, this critical legislation would help promote New York's tourism and ensure long term growth. I have long advocated for this type of federal initiative into tourism promotion because I believe it would bring tremendous economic opportunity to the families of our state."