Tourism continues to positively impact Palm Coast and Flagler County. Tourist Development Tax revenue in 2015-2016 totaled $2,089,110, a record setting collection, representing a 3 percent increase over the previous year. In 2015-2016, 21 percent of total Flagler County employment was made up of tourism jobs. 2015-2016 saw a 6 percent Flagler County sales growth rate and an 8 percent tourism sales growth rate, with $68 million produced in payroll.
The first quarter trend for 2016 shows a 3 percent increase over the previous year for Tourism Development Tax revenue. 24 percent of total Flagler County employment was made up of tourism jobs. First quarter trends show a 7 percent Flagler County sales growth rate and a 5 percent tourism sales growth rate, with $17.9 million already produced in payroll. For every $1 invested, Flagler County saw $9.94 in tax revenue.
According to the state of Florida’s chief economist Amy Baker, for every $1 invested in VISIT FLORIDA, the state’s tourism marketing arm, $3.20 in tax revenue is generated. VISIT FLORIDA adds the following statistics:
- Every 76 visitors to the state supports one tourism job
- Visitors spent an average of $300 million per day in 2015
- In 2015, visitors to Florida spent $108.8 billion, generating $11.3 billion in state and local taxes (nearly 30 percent of total tax receipts) and supporting 1.4 million Florida jobs
Based on studies of tourism budget cuts in other states, the U.S. Travel Association predicts that with a 2 percent reduction in travel, Florida would lose $2.2 billion in travel spending, 28,000 in Florida jobs and $225 million in tax revenue.
Now, more than ever, it’s important to appreciate and support the positive economic impact tourism has on the Palm Coast and Flagler Beaches.