The Pure Michigan ad campaign is one step closer full funding for the year. A state House panel has approved additional money to keep the ad campaign on air through the busy tourism months.
Representative Wayne Schmidt of Traverse City sponsored the measure. He says the debate over Pure Michigan funding is going more smoothly this year than last year.
"Most people do recognize now, tourism is a very key component of the economy. It touches on so many other segments of the economy," he says. "So you can't just say it's hotels or motels or just restaurants, but it's everything from laundry mats to convenience stores to auto repair shops, gas stations, so a very broad ranging economic driver."
Schmidt says he's also confident that Governor Snyder and the Legislature will find a permanent source of funding to keep Pure Michigan on the air in the future.
If the money is approved for the campaign for this year, it would come from the 21st Century Jobs Fund, an investment fund intended by Governor Jennifer Granholm to promote job creation. Funding Pure Michigan through that reserve has been controversial in the past.
"The governor (Rick Snyder) seems to think this is a good way to go, so I would tend to say, should he outline it in his budget coming up in the next week or so, I think we could continue to see this being used as the funding mechanism," Schmidt says
The measure still has to get through the full House and the Senate. But state Representative Wayne Schmidt, of Traverse City, thinks this could be the first thing the Legislature approves this year and sends to Governor Rick Snyder for his signature. Schmidt sponsored the measure.
Snyder called on lawmakers to approve additional money for Pure Michigan, as well as eliminate the state's item pricing law, which requires shop owners to put price tags on items on their shelves.