Visitors Bureau meets local businesses

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Gathering held in Cedar Key

By Kellie Parkin

The Levy County Visitors Bureau met with area businesses in Cedar Key this week to discuss how the agency works to promote local tourism.

“I would like to make this an annual event – maybe in May with Tourism Week,” said Carol McQueen, Executive Director of the Visitors Bureau. “We collect a tax and I think people want to know what we do with it.”

The Visitors Bureau operates from a 2 percent Tourism Development Tax that is collected throughout the county from the accommodation industry. The tax is charged per overnight stay in any short term lodging of six months or less, including condos, cottages, motels, and hotels.

Estimated revenue from the tax was $169,800 in the 2006-07 fiscal year, according to McQueen. Last year, travel to the county was down by about 5 percent, bringing in about $162,000, she said.

The Visitors Bureau focuses on advertising in key markets such as Atlanta and Birmingham to bring visitors to Levy County, said McQueen. “Our marketing efforts encompass the entire United States with targeted markets in the Southeast,” she said.

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