Iowa’s legislative session finally came to a close in the early morning hours of May 25, 2022. Now that there has been time to let the dust settle, we can proudly say that tourism experienced a record year in terms of funding appropriated by Iowa’s legislature.
Tourism programming was appropriated over $50.79 M in funding. Over $30.5 M of that was new funding. Some of the new funding is being used to create new programing and some is being used to bolster current programming. Below is a list of the key tourism funding highlights.
Thank you to Iowa’s elected officials for valuing the power of tourism. Cornerstone Government Affairs, tourism champions, the Legislative tourism caucus, and industry grassroots efforts combined to create the powerful results for Iowa’s tourism industry.
Key tourism highlights:
- $1.1 M (new) to IEDA for tourism advertising and strategic plan outreach that will implement the Authority’s 2022 strategic plan for tourism and travel.
- $1,443,700 ($543,700 new) to IEDA for the Tourism Marketing office.
- $2 M ($1 M new) for statewide tourism marketing services efforts from the Beer and Liquor Control Fund to IEDA to contract with vendors with the purpose of Tourism Marketing.
- $426,398 (stable) for operation and maintenance of historic sites across Iowa owned by the State Historical Society as well as for the Department of Cultural Affairs to coordinate with IEDA’s Tourism office to promote attendance at the State Historical Building and the State’s Historic Sites.
- $1,317,188 (stable) for the arts division of the Department of Cultural Affairs ($300,000 to be allocated to the Film Office).
- $1 M from RIIF & $150,000 from EcoDevo budget (stable) for Iowa Great Places to assist local communities in developing innovative and entrepreneurial cultural and tourism efforts.
- $10 M ($5 M new) from RIIF to IEDA for the Community Attraction & Tourism (CAT) Fund.
- $150,000 (new) to National Junior Olympics.
- $500,000 (stable) for Regional Sports Authority Districts (RSAD).
- $5 M ($3 M new) for state park improvements.
- $1.5 M ($500,000 new) for grant awards for water trails.
- $250,000 (new) for tree planting program. This appropriation is intended to support efforts to re-establish trees that were lost to the derecho that occurred on August 10, 2020.
- $6 M (new) for the Iowa State Fair Authority to renovate four barns on the Iowa State Fairgrounds.
- $2.5 M ($1 M new) for grant funding for the Recreational Trails Program.
- $1.9 M (stable) for Commercial Service Airport Vertical Improvements. There are eight commercial service airports in the State and the funds are distributed through a 50/40/10 formula.
- $1 M (stable) for General Aviation Airport Vertical Infrastructure grant program.
- $1.06 M (stable) for County Fair Vertical Improvements grant program.
- $12 M (new) for Sports Tourism Infrastructure Program Fund.
- $1.5 M (stable) for Sports Tourism Marketing Program.