The Legislature created the Washington Tourism Marketing Authority (Authority) in 2018 as a public entity to manage financial resources and contract for statewide tourism marketing services. The Authority is governed by a board of directors, with assistance from a nonvoting advisory committee.
Up to $3 million from revenue per biennium from a 0.2 percent of tax collected on retail sales of lodging, car rentals, and restaurants may be deposited into the Statewide Tourism Marketing Account (Account). Money in the Account can only be spent after appropriation. A match of two-to-one nonstate or state fund, other than general fund state, must be provided for all expenditures from the account. The Account may be used for the operation of the Authority and the Statewide Tourism Marketing Program and for certain allowable expenses.
Allowable expenses include entering into a contract for a multiple-year statewide tourism marketing plan with an existing statewide nonprofit organization, which must include focuses on:
The match requirement for expenditures from the Account is changed from two-to-one nonstate or state fund, other than general fund state, to one-to-one.
The portion of revenue collected on retail sales of lodging, car rentals, and restaurants and deposited into the Account is increased from $3 to $9 million per biennium.