Monday, July 26, 2010

State Closes Tourism Information Centers Along Interstates

It's being called a cost-saving move, but visitors wanting tourism information can no longer get it at state rest areas.

All personnel have been laid off due to the state's growing budget problem.

The Chicago Tribune is the latest with the story.

The move to cut tourism spending will likely only hurt the state. Past studies show for every dollar spent by the state for tourism generates more than $8 back for the general revenue fund itself, not to mention the jobs it creates.

The move for the current fiscal year doesn't come as a surprise. As of late June, the end of the last fiscal year the state owed around $1.5 million to the non-profit operator of the welcome centers. Layoffs were going to happen one way or another.

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