LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Travel is important to area

The 2019 National Travel and Tourism week is being celebrated May 5th-11th. Each year, during this week, we are reminded how important travel and tourism is to our state and local economies. The tourism industry contributes many economic activities. The impact is shown not only through the City’s hotel/motel tax, but also through sales tax revenue from shopping, dining and entertainment. The 2017 total direct employment in Odessa due to the tourism industry was 2,900 jobs.

So why are travel and tourism dollars essential to Odessa? What do these dollars mean to YOU as a resident and tax payer? According to the 2017 Dean Runyan Economic Impact Report, Odessa received $9.5 million in local visitor receipts and $22.3 million in state tax receipts. It means if not for visitor spending in Odessa in 2017, every Odessa household would pay an additional $804 in taxes in order to sustain its existing city services.

Now that you know the impact travel can make, be sure to show our visitors what we are known best for in Odessa: Our West Texas hospitality is second to none! Show them how appreciative we are to them for choosing Odessa as a destination and make them want to come back again due to the great service and friendliness they experienced.