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Gov. Hickenlooper announces grants to promote tourism in flood recovery areas

DENVER — Wednesday, July 16, 2014 — Gov. John Hickenlooper announced today $500,000 in grants to advertise, promote and support tourism in flood-ravaged counties.  The grants will be directed to eight projects in five counties to attract visitors, support local jobs and strengthen local economies that suffered losses from the September 2013 floods.



In December 2013, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded the State of Colorado $62.8 million in Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds to assist flood-impacted counties with housing, infrastructure and economic revitalization.  HUD granted a waiver allowing a portion of those funds to be used to promote tourism.



“I appreciate that HUD has recognized the importance of tourism and visitor spending to the Colorado flood recovery efforts and is allowing us to provide marketing funds to flood impacted and tourism reliant areas,” Hickenlooper said. “Colorado has an unparalleled visitor experience and we welcome guests from around the world.”



The $500,000 in grants announced today have been awarded to the following organizations:






Visit Estes Park



Lyons Area Chamber of Commerce



Manitou Springs Chamber of Commerce


El Paso

Boulder Convention and Visitors Bureau



Colorado Springs Convention and Visitors  Bureau


El Paso

Logan County Chamber of Commerce



Milliken Business Association



Town of Nederland





“This money will let people around the country know we’ve made incredible progress.  We are definitely open for business and look forward to people visiting Colorado” said Molly Urbina, Chief Recovery Officer.



Grant applications were reviewed by the Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) and the Colorado Tourism Office (CTO).  The awards will generate more than $932,000 worth of tourism promotion, due to recipients leveraging $432,000 in additional funds.  Factors considered in making awards included per capita and total economic damages to area businesses, local economic dependence on tourism dollars, and the potential benefits from the proposals.  Applicants provided marketing plans and budgets that will be used to monitor performance.