Washington tourism professionals discuss state of the industry

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by KING 5 News

KREM.com

Posted on March 12, 2013 at 10:53 AM

Hundreds of Washington tourism professional are meeting in an Olympia for a summit Tuesday.

When the state tourism office closed in 2011, the Washington Tourism Alliance stepped in. The group organized this summit to present the state of the industry.

Between the waterfront, Space Needle, and our many state parks, tourists bring billions of dollars in revenue every year.

States around the country have been watching Washington to see how the tourism industry fares with the closing of the state office.

Tourism is the fourth largest industry in Washington in terms of its impact on economy. In 2011, the tourism industry had $16 billion in revenue and provided 150,000 jobs, which is double the Boeing work force.

That was the year the state tourism office closed. At the tourism summit, new numbers will be released showing how the industry is doing currently.

A spokesperson for the Washington Tourism Alliance said Washington saw modest growth in the tourism industry, but is lagging behind other western states. The alliance is asking for financial support to help Washington compete with other states.

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