CARSON CITY — The Nevada Commission on Tourism (NCOT) has awarded $985,146 in grant funding for projects throughout rural Nevada designed to increase travel to those areas, Lt. Gov. Brian Krolicki announced Wednesday at the commission's quarterly meeting. Among the unique proposals approved by the commission are a social media “selfie” scavenger hunt contest in the state’s central/southern region as well as a project to promote the ParaLong Drive World golf tournament for golfers with disabilities.
“Nevada has so many hidden treasures in lesser-known areas of our state,” Krolicki, NCOT chairman, said. “The tourism professionals in rural Nevada work very hard to find creative, new and interesting ways to bring visitors to these extraordinary areas. The commission is very pleased to be a partner with these local and regional tourism agencies in finding ways to increase visitors and economic activity to rural Nevada.”
NCOT’s longstanding Rural Grants Program helps rural communities and also generates room tax revenue for the state. Grant recipients must provide a 50-50 match in funds or the equivalent in volunteer hours and use the money to maximize their marketing outreach which will bring more travelers to Nevada’s rural areas.
“We’re impressed with the creativity and resourcefulness displayed in the grant applications,” Claudia Vecchio, Nevada Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs director, said. “Many of the requests were for social media projects or for projects that will augment social media — these are very savvy decisions, as today’s travelers increasingly turn to social media to research and plan their vacations.”
NCOT, a division of the Nevada Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, receives three-eighths of 1 percent of room tax revenue as its operation budget. A portion of those funds are used to offer the Rural Grants Program, which helps nonprofit groups and government agencies in rural Nevada enhance visitation from overnight stays. Funding for the grants does not come from the state’s General Fund.
Grant awardees must provide a 50-50 match in funds or volunteer hours. NCOT reimburses the applicants after the projects are completed and labor and funding details have been provided.
A total of 148 grants were awarded in this current cycle of grants. A second cycle will be awarded in December.
Among the funded projects:
The Nevada Commission on Tourism (NCOT) is part of the Nevada Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs. NCOT is responsible for promoting and marketing Nevada as a travel destination to domestic and international travelers. Operating within a performance-based budget structure, NCOT is funded solely by a percentage of lodging tax paid by overnight guests throughout the state. For more, visit www.TravelNevada.biz.