How Statewide Elected Positions Impact Tourism

You might already know that tourism is the largest industry in New Orleans, employing more than 78,000 locals. But did you know that even our state government has a direct impact on tourism for the city? With elections coming up, we’re taking a look at why it’s so important to vote. After all, once officials are in office, the duties of elected officials are closely tied to legislation that affects the tourism industry – and as we’ve seen, the tourism industry has a ripple effect throughout the entire community and economy.

The Old U.S. Mint. (Photo via Flickr Creative Commons)

Duties related to the Old U.S. Mint fall under the Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of State. (Photo via Flickr Creative Commons)

Sample Duties of Elected Officials

This year’s election includes candidates running for major state government roles like governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, and treasurer. But what are some of the duties these positions entail when it comes to legislation? Here’s a brief breakdown:

Governor: The elected governor has the power to sign bills, approved by the House and Senate, into law. The governor also has the ability to veto any bill that reaches his desk.

Lieutenant Governor: The lieutenant governor is the commissioner for the Culture, Recreation and Tourism Department. That means they are in charge of preserving, showcasing and marketing the state’s culture and history. This position also manages the state museums such as the Cabildo and the Old U.S. Mint. Obviously, this role in particular is closely tied to tourism and has a significant effect on day-to-day lives of New Orleanians, particularly those who work in the tourism and hospitality industry.

Secretary of State: The secretary of state is in charge of operations of the state-owned museums across Louisiana. Additionally, the secretary of state oversees the voting process from start to finish, including details surrounding voter registration to tallying and verifying the results of the election.

Treasurer: As you’d expect, the treasurer manages all public money for the state. This is important because tourism dollars end up funding public entities like education, public safety and infrastructure. Last year, the tourism industry generated more than $250 million dollars of tax revenue.

Other important connections to tourism and government include elected positions like state representatives and senators. These elected officials can introduce and vote on bills during the legislative session such as the movie tax credit or the major event tax program– both directly tied to the hospitality industry.

Considering the close connection between political representatives and tourism, it’s easy to see why it’s so important to vote. Remember to cast your ballot – it’s not only your civic duty, it’s also directly related to the New Orleans economy.