HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Maximizing Pennsylvania's potential to
attract tourists and boosting visitor spending is the mandate of a
new public-private advisory group formed by Gov. Tom Ridge.
The Governor's Travel and Tourism Council, as the newly created,
29-member group is called, will coordinate the efforts of the many
public and private entities involved in the tourism industry.
"The current size and expected growth of the tourism industry
demands a unified and coordinated approach among all those working
in this very vibrant and important industry," Ridge said.
Tourism is Pennsylvania's second-largest industry, providing
more than 376,000 jobs for residents and generating more than $20
billion for the state's economy through spending by tourists in
1995, Ridge said.
The council is the first official group that includes
representatives from both the public and private sectors, including
representatives from tourism promotion agencies, private- sector
tourist sites, members of the General Assembly, the Pennsylvania
Council on the Arts, the Pennsylvania Rural Development Council and
several state agencies.