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Tourism spending hits record in Hall County
About $314 million dropped on hotels and other spending in 2016
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Stacey Dickson, Lake Lanier Convention & Visitors Bureau president, talks to the Hall County Board of Commissioners Monday about record visitor spending in 2016.

Visitor spending in Hall County hit a record $314 million in 2016, topping $300 million for the first time, said Stacey Dickson, Lake Lanier Convention & Visitors Bureau president, on Monday.

The amount marked a 4.7 percent increase from the previous year, she told the Hall County Board of Commissioners in a CVB update.

“That’s over $1 million in new spending per month … so we’ll take that,” she said.

Also, the $314 million is about $170 million more than Hall’s nearest neighbor, Forsyth County, and it ranks 12th in the state, Dickson said.

“Considering that we have about 1,000 sellable hotel rooms, that’s amazing,” she said.
“Folks coming to Hall County are certainly spending their money in other places besides hotels.”

She said the figure generates $23.1 million in state and local tax revenue.

Speaking later about the spending, Dickson said the amount also is noteworthy because no new hotels or attractions were added in Hall in 2016.

More and bigger events, plus higher average daily hotel rates, may factor into the higher spending. She also said more disposable income on the part of tourists may be a factor.

The additional good news is “there is opportunity for growth,” Dickson said.

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