Tourism leaders look for tourism funding

Fireworks set off by Titanic Pigeon Forge on Thanksgiving. (Source: Kyle Grainger, WVLT)

SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Tourism leaders are excited about Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam's State of the State address, and his push to get more tourism funding.

Governor Haslam talked about creating jobs, and the fact that tourism creates jabs across the Volunteer state. Industry leaders want more money to promote Tennessee and get more visitors.

Haslam has set $8M aside in the proposed budget to help market the state to other areas.

"You know that $8 million sounds wonderful for reaching out and being competitive with some of these other states that are really putting major dollars behind their tourism promotion campaigns," said Amanda Maples Marr with the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce.

Tourism is the state's 2nd largest industry. Many areas of the Smokies saw a 15-20% increase in tourism.

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