February 3, 2017
GRAND JUNCTION — According to a new study released Tuesday the economy in Mesa County benefits from a strong tourism industry. Tourism employs over 5,500 people and generates over $14 million in sales and lodging tax for local governments.
The study, conducted and presented by the Grand Junction Visitor and Convention Bureau, details demographics and expenditures of tourists and specifics of how the tourism industry benefits towns in Mesa County.
Besides relying on economic data to present findings the study conducted surveys of tourists visiting the area to find out what places they had visited or plan to visit, how they traveled and where they were staying.
Unsurprisingly the most popular destinations for tourists surveyed were the Colorado National Monument and local wineries.
For comparison our neighbor in tourism, Moab, collected nearly $62 million dollars in revenue from tourism in sales tax alone in 2015, according to the Utah State Tax Commission.
Will the tourism industry in Grand Junction be as massive as it is in Moab some day? Is that something the community here really wants? Enthusiasm for the results of this study may be an indicator, but can’t predict the future.