A City Plan Seeks to Remake Tourism Agency Into Cultural Funding Organization

Under New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, the city's first black woman mayor, the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corp. (NOTMC), hopes it will be able to provide grants to cultural organizations, nola.com reported recently.

“The idea is that we can consolidate and create efficiencies in the administration of these dollars by using an entity that already exists,” said Josh Cox, director of strategic initiatives for Cantrell, to nola.com.

Louisiana Weekly reported the changes to NOTMC are the result of Cantrell’s “fair share deal” that she brokered with state officials and the hospitality industry last year in hopes of dedicating more hotel taxes to local infrastructure projects, particularly at the Sewerage and Water Board. The deal included a host of trade-offs between the city and hospitality industry.

“For a long time there have been culture-bearers who want to and feel that they need to get more of their fair shake. And we hope that with this vote and the creation of this fund, we’ll be able to create some of that long term revenue,” said Cox to Louisiana Weekly.

The new fund will have roughly $3.9 million to dole out this year, detailed Louisiana Weekly, "but exactly what this fund will look like and where the money will go is still largely unclear."

The proposal would need the approval of both the NOTMC board and the City Council, nola.com explained.

Read the article here.