The newly formed convention, visitor and tourism board has been named and in the coming months will decide how to spend tax dollars.
Last year, the Johnson County Council approved a new tax that adds 5 percent on every inn, hotel or motel stay in the county. The money is collected for tourism and promotion of Johnson County businesses or events.
A nine-member convention, visitor and tourism board, made up of residents appointed by the Johnson County Commissioners and Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers, was created and met for the first time this week.
The innkeeper’s tax went into effect Jan. 1.
The tourism board will come up with a budget for 2017 by this summer. Once the budget is submitted to the county, the tourism board can request to spend some of the tax money collected so far this year.
The new board plans to meet monthly.
Existing website JourneyJohnsonCounty.com will be turned over to the tourism board once it can pay for the fees, Johnson County Development Corp. chief executive officer Cheryl Morphew said. Residents involved in Aspire Johnson County are improving the website and preparing it for the tourism board, she said.
Board members want to bring in other visitor bureaus, such as Visit Indy or other county tourism organizations, for suggestions on how to be successful in promoting the county and how the board focuses its efforts.
The nine-member convention, visitor and tourism board includes six appointees by the Johnson County Commissioners and three from Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers. Here’s a look at who is on the board:
- Christian Maslowski, chief executive officer of Greenwood Chamber of Commerce
- Michael Neal, director of community affairs for Gov. Mike Pence
- Kim Smith, owner of Ashley-Drake Historic Inn
- Janice Bullman, executive director of Franklin Chamber of Commerce
- Megan Bowman, superintendent of Johnson County Parks Department
- Sarah Brown, co-owner of Apple Works
- Nathan Huelsebusch, president of Taxman Brewing Co.
- Laura Richardson, co-owner of Mallow Run Winery