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2012 Visitor Impact for New Hanover County

Tourism Spending by Domestic Visitors Increases in New Hanover County and Statewide; New Hanover County Has 2nd Largest Increase at 8%; Ranks #9 in Tourism Expenditures

WILMINGTON, N.C. - August 12, 2013 - Kim Hufham, President/CEO of the New Hanover County Tourism Development Authority, announced today that the North Carolina Division of Tourism, Film and Sports Development released the estimated county-by-county tourism economic impact statistics for 2012.
North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory and Department of Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker announced earlier today that visitor spending rose in all 100 North Carolina Counties during 2012. The “2012 Economic Impact of Travel on North Carolina Counties” annual study was prepared for the North Carolina Division of Tourism, Film and Sports Development by the U.S Travel Association. The study reveals that in the year 2012 the economic impact from domestic travel in New Hanover County was estimated at $460.05 million, representing an 8.0% increase over revised 2011 revenues. This visitor spending increase was among the top two highest in the state. New Hanover maintains its ranks as number 9 among North Carolina's 100 counties in tourism expenditures.
According to the study, in 2012 Travel and Tourism in New Hanover County also experienced one of the largest increases in direct tourism employment from 2011 to 2012, with more than 5,360 jobs (a 5% increase) that supported a payroll of $100.77 million.
Travel and Tourism in New Hanover County also generated $40.43 million in state and local tax receipts. Travel-generated state and local tax revenues saved each New Hanover County resident approximately $192.56.
“We are pleased to report that tourism spending and direct tourism employment for New Hanover County during 2012 were among the top percentage increases in the state,” states Kim Hufham. “We are further encouraged that New Hanover County Room Occupancy Tax [ROT] collections for fiscal year 2012/2013 are expected to confirm record growth. Based on ROT reports July 2012 through May 2013, collections were up 4.35% over prior year. We are hopeful that June 2013 figures will prove that fiscal year 2012/2013 sets a new benchmark for ROT collections. When tourism revenues are up it means more jobs and a better quality of life for our local citizens.”
Travel and Tourism is an important economic generator that infuses millions of new dollars into our local economy each year.
Travel and Tourism is also among the state’s fastest growing industries. In May Governor Pat McCrory announced that domestic and international visitors to and within North Carolina spent a record $19.4 billion in 2012, an increase of 5% percent from 2011.
The study also reveals that state tax receipts, as a result of visitor spending, neared $1 billion in 2012 and have increased 42% over the last 10 years.
The New Hanover County Tourism Development Authority d/b/a Wilmington and Beaches Convention & Visitors Bureau is the official destination marketing organization that stimulates economic development through the promotion of travel and tourism.