10/30/2019- Marinette County is taking a new approach to tourism promotion in the new year. County Administrator John Lefebvre informed the County Board Tuesday that he does not intend to renew the contract for a shared tourism and marketing employee with the City of Marinette after it expires at the end of 2019. He instead is recommending bringing a new employee on board whose focus will be to help develop and promote only Marinette County-owned and operated assets.
“The County should really look at taking a step back from being the larger tourism entity that’s going to promote the entire county and try to concentrate on what we have as facilities and assets. I’m going to recommend to create a new position in the Facilities and Parks Department. The position would assist with the marketing and promotion of the parks, campgrounds, ATV trails, waterfalls, hiking trails. The position would also assist with the development and improvement of recreational activities on county property.”
The County Board agreed in February of 2018 to contract with the City for tourism and marketing services and extended that contract in December of last year. Lefebvre says the County still needs to play a role in drawing visitors to the area, but could do so by partnering with other agencies who already have a handle on that type of work.
“I’m talking about either non-profits- it could be the Crivitz Recreation Association, it could be the Wausaukee Business Association, it could be another entity like the City of Marinette. It could even be a private company. The other thing we would do, or be looking at doing, is we would contract or work with other entities to produce some type of tourism guide that could be distributed out in the community.”
Lefebvre is proposing the funding for the new county position be drawn from the $125000 in the 2020 budget earmarked for tourism. The discussion is expected to be taken up at the committee level in November.