The federal government is urged to spend $50 million over a two year period to revitalize travel and tourism in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks.

A new bill, the Tourism Revitalization and Valued Employee Labor Act of 2001, has been introduced to the House of Representatives by two Democrat members, Patrick Kennedy (Rhode Island) and Alcee Hastings (Florida). It provides for $30 million in federal dollars to be spent on advertising and promotion next year, plus a further $20 million in 2003.

Says Dick O'Brien, executive vp of the American Association of Advertising Agencies: “We applaud the government for this constructive step toward bringing the travel and tourism industry back to health.”

His enthusiasm was echoed by the Association of National Advertisers: “One of the main things the advertising industry and everybody else is concerned about in this country is getting business to move again,” said evp for government relations Dan Jaffe.

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