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County approves tourism tax increase

BRADENTON — Manatee County’s 4-cent tourism tax will increase by 1 percent next month.

The Manatee County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday approved a levy to the bed tax that was proposed by the Bradenton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The tourism tax increase will take effect in May and is expected to bring in an additional $1.2 million to the Bradenton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau budget, which is $5.4 million for fiscal year 2009.

Larry White, executive director of the Bradenton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, said the additional penny was necessary to protect and continue building funds for its marketing plans.

The visitors bureau has allocated $2.3 million for its marketing plan, which includes expenses for advertising, promotions, the tourist information center and three public relations firms.

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