Taxes paid by tourists lessen Warren Countians’ state and local tax burden by nearly $1,000 per household, according to one official.
Tourism was responsible for $13.7 billion to Kentucky’s economy in 2015, the latest numbers available from the state’s Tourism, Arts & Heritage Cabinet. New numbers will be released next month. The industry generated more than $1.43 billion in tax revenues in 2015.
“It is a huge driver of the economy in Kentucky,” said Hank Phillips, president and chief executive officer of the Kentucky Travel Industry Association, a trade organization that represents all segments of Kentucky’s tourism industry. “It is the third-largest industry in the state, and people don’t realize how much of an economic contribution that tourism makes to the state.
“For every dollar that the state invests in advertising Kentucky, their research shows that $150 comes back in visitor expenditures. For every dollar invested, there are $16 in local and state tax revenues that come back from that investment. The return on tourism investment is huge both in terms of money coming into the economy and much-needed local and state tax revenue,” Phillips said.