Unbelievable is probably the only printable version of what many in the US tourism industry are actually saying as the news that Donald Trump’s new budget proposes the elimination of Brand USA.
In a statement following the release of the federal budget document, U.S. Travel Association president and CEO, Roger Dow said:
“With all that’s going on in the world, unilaterally disarming the marketing of the U.S. as a travel destination would be to surrender market share at the worst possible time. It’s especially perplexing that the elimination of Brand USA is on the table when both Commerce Secretary Ross and OMB Director Mulvaney each have supported it previously.”
Dow pointed out that:
“The creation of Brand USA was a bipartisan effort led by Republicans that passed both chambers by overwhelming majorities. The agency was responsible for adding $8.9 billion to the U.S. economy last year, according to the firm Oxford Economics – a 28-to-1 return on investment.”
And Dow made it abundantly clear that:
“Brand USA isn’t funded with a dime of taxpayer money. [It] reduced the deficit by $50 million, and by the OMB’s own accounting eliminating it would put the federal budget further in the red.”
As Dow sees it:
“With international visitation being the country’s No. 2 export supporting 15 million American jobs, we’re struggling to understand how cutting Brand USA squares with this administration’s stated priorities.”
ABSOLUTELY … UNBELIEVABLE!