More grant money eyed

JOHNSTOWN – Tourism officials may get another $15,000 to help promote Fulton County events and attractions after a matching grant from the state ended up higher than anticipated.

The state’s I Love NY tourism program has offered the Fulton-Montgomery Regional Chamber of Commerce up to $61,756 in matching funds, which is $7,845 more than expected.

The 2016 county budget included up to $53,911 for I Love NY tourism promotion. The Board of Supervisors’ Economic Development Committee approved appropriating the additional $7,845 to earn the state match Wednesday and the Finance Committee gave its support this morning.

“You’re doubling your money because it’s a matching program, so if you come up with the $7,800, we get $7,800,” county Administrative Officer Jon Stead told supervisors.

The state requires tourism agencies to use the grant funds to promote the county to potential visitors from outside the county. The funds apply only to Fulton County tourism.

Gina DaBiere-Gibbs, the chamber’s tourism director, said the funds pay for the website, brochures and distribution, online advertising. The $15,000 increase will lead to more marketing opportunities, including to residents of the Capital-Saratoga region.

“It pretty much has to be spent bringing people from outside the county,” she said.

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