Travel and Tourism Committee Update
October 3, 2012

Governor's Tourism Advisory Council

The Governor's Tourism Advisory Council (TAC) chaired by Tim Zagat met last week in New York City. At the meeting BBDO, the marketing firm working on the New York Open for Business campaign, went over the two new fall campaigns that will start mid-October. BBDO found that their summer campaigns, which was the first time I Love NY was in the market in a few years, were received very well by viewers and found that it made people rethink things to do throughout the state, particularly in upstate New York. The new fall ads can be viewed on the I Love NY website. Harvey Cohen, Sr. Vice President of Marketing for Empire State Development said that the State has spent close to $17 million to promote tourism, including $7 million for the TV ads.

The overall structure and strategy of a statewide marketing organization was also discussed; the idea that the state and stakeholders need to stop thinking in a “silo.” What type of structure needs to be created for a more centralized effort? Is this something that should be created through the Regional Economic Development Councils? Should a public private partnership, similar to NYC & Co., be created? Some of the concerns surrounding a public private partnership format include needing a source of funding that is definitive and robust; would this organization fall under the Empire State Development Corporation or would it need to be organized as a private entity; how do we leverage private investment without constraining other like organizations and would private entities buy in to this program?

Other items that were discussed include showcasing more cultural tourism, heritage tourism and agri-tourism in future I Love NY ads; can the state help support a luxury hotel in upstate; and improving the customer experience at airports, particularly NYC airports as they are major gateways. Pat Foye, Executive Director of the Port Authority, is committed to taking a major role in improving the customer experience. They have recently hired more people to meet and greet travelers and they are also improving signage

To view the meeting in its entirety, please click here.

FEEDBACK NEEDED! Do you believe the state's tourism marketing program should move to a public private partnership program similar to NYC & Co. or similar programs in California and Florida? How do you think they should be set up and funded?

Beer & Wine Summit

The Governor announced a Beer & Wine Summit, similar to the very popular Yogurt Summit that was just held in August; the Beer and Wine Summit will be held at the end of October and will look at ways the state can better help foster the industry. The Business Council has been asked to submit ideas for discussion that are most important to the industry.

FEEDBACK NEEDED! What should the Beer & Wine Summit focus on? How can the state help foster and grow these industries, including but not limited to changes to Alcohol and Beverage Control Law and reducing regulatory burdens?