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(Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2009)—Mayor Mufi Hannemann applauded the U.S. Senate’s approval today of the Travel Promotion Act, which is among the top priorities of the U.S. Conference of Mayors.


            “We are very pleased that this important legislation is moving forward to boost the visitor industry and help improve our nation’s economy,” said Hannemann, Chairman of the Conference’s Standing Committee on Tourism, Arts, Parks, Entertainment and Sports.


            He especially thanked Senator Daniel K. Inouye for his support of the measure, which awaits final approval by the U.S. House of Representatives.


            “When I assumed the chairmanship of the TAPES committee, I immediately met with Senator Inouye to discuss how important this legislation is, not only to Hawaii’s mayors, but to the nation’s mayors,” Hannemann said. “Tourism is Hawaii’s number one industry, and Senator Inouye’s strong leadership has helped move this legislation forward.”


            The Travel Promotion Act will create a public-private partnership to promote the United States as a premier international travel destination and communicate US security and entry policies. The travel promotion will be paid for by private sector contributions and a $10 fee on foreign travelers.


The US Travel Association, of which the US Conference of Mayors is a member, estimates that the bill would attract 1.6 million new international visitors, create nearly 40,000 new jobs in its first year, and would generate $4 billion in new economic activity and contribute over $320 million in new federal tax revenue each year.




Media contact: Bill Brennan, Mayor’s Office, 768-5767