The Washington County hotel tax exceeded $2 million for the first time in its history last fiscal year due to efforts of local tourism officials. As reported by the Hagerstown Herald-Mail,
“We’re growing together,” said Dan Spedden, president of the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau. “I think tourism in this county is still in its infancy. I think we’ve yet to scratch the surface on what we can accomplish, and I see the future as being very bright for tourism.”
Under state law, the local tourism agency receives half the proceeds from the fund each year, totaling $1,023,600 for the 2014-15 fiscal year, with the other half going to the county.
Of the remaining county share, a portion is distributed to municipalities for projects, and the remaining portion is used for business and economic development incentives for new and existing businesses.
“The CVB and the county working together, that’s a great benefit for us,” county Commissioner Jeffrey A. Cline said. “That money also helps small towns like Funkstown and my hometown of Williamsport to put on cultural events that help make Washington County shine.”
Assistant County Administrator Sarah L. Sprecher, who oversees business development in the county, said in an email that proceeds from the fund have allowed the county to support job creation and capital investment from companies like Volvo Powertrain, National Golden Tissue and Tempur Sealy International, among others, in recent years.