State report: Tourism spending, employment growing in Madison County

Tourism spending and employment continue to grow in Madison County, according to a recently released state report. The 2018 Economic Impact of Travel report, highlighted by Berea Tourism, indicates that travel-related spending in Kentucky and Madison County rose from 2017 to 2018, and that’s meant more money coming into the local economy. Additionally, a growing number of people are being employed in tourism or tourism-impacted fields. According to the latest figures:

Madison County – direct tourism employment:

2018 – 1,373

2017 – 1,317

Madison County employment – jobs impacted by tourism:

2018 – 1,820

2017 – 1,761

Labor income directly from Madison County tourism:

2018 – $28,660,000

2017 – $26,820,000

Labor income in Madison County – impacted by tourism:

2018 – 44,500,000

2017 – $42,390,000

State and local tax revenue derived from tourism in Madison County:

2018 – $14,860,000

2017 – $13,750,000

Tourism spending in Madison – direct:

2018 – $131,320,000

2017 – $122,110,000

Tourism spending total in Madison:

2018 – $190,590,000

2017 – $179,610,000

In Kentucky overall, the report indicates a total of 67,528 people were directly employed in tourism fields in 2018, with 94,583 employed in tourism impacted trades. Those numbers were also up from 2017.

Berea Tourism Director Kerri Hensley said the numbers bode well for communities investing in the tourism industry.

“Tourism is the third largest industry in Kentucky behind manufacturing and healthcare,” Hensley said. “Visitors generated the equivalent of $456 in state and local taxes for every household in Kentucky in 2018.  Kentucky’s tourism economy has grown every year since the recession in 2008, and tourism provides not only a great economic benefit, it also enhances the quality of life for our residents.”

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