Published on : Monday, June 20, 2016
Visit California President and CEO Caroline Beteta issued the following statement today after attending President Barack Obama’s address in Yosemite Valley. Obama, the first sitting president to visit Yosemite since President John F. Kennedy in 1962, is visiting the park with his family to celebrate the National Park Service’s Centennial.
“California’s tourism industry welcomes President Obama during his historic visit to Yosemite. This milestone trip is an extraordinary opportunity for the First Family to experience the natural beauty of the Golden State and shine a spotlight on its incredible abundance.
Yosemite’s unparalleled majesty inspires travelers from around the world to visit and experience nature at its most awe-inspiring. The allure of this treasure, as with all our national parks, fuels a powerful economic engine for communities surrounding the park.
Home to more national parks than any other state, California’s diverse landscapes inspire residents and visitors alike.”
Other key facts and data to help with your reporting:
· The President issued a proclamation declaring June 2016 as national Great Outdoors Month, a monthlong celebration of the American outdoors and the benefits it brings all of us. (Source: White House)
· President Obama is the first commander-in-chief to visit Yosemite National Park since 1962, when President John F. Kennedy visited the park. (Source: Fresno Bee)
· President Obama has conserved more land and water than any president in history, protecting more than 265 million acres. (Source: The New York Times)
· In February, he conserved three desert areas in California – nearly 1.8 million acres – designating the Mojave Trails, Sand to Snow and Castle Mountains national monuments. (Source: The New York Times)
· The annual economic impact of state and national parks alone in California is more than $8 billion per year, supporting a tourism economy that provided $122 billion in visitor spending, 1.1 million jobs and $9.9 billion in state and local tax revenue in 2015. (Source: Visit California)
· Yosemite National Park spans three counties – Madera, Mariposa and Tuolumne – all of which benefit from the more than 4 million people who visit the park annually. See the impact of tourism in those counties in 2015. (Sources: McClatchy DC and Visit California)
o Madera County:
$274 million in visitor spending, 3,290 jobs, and $22.8 million in state and local tax revenue
o Mariposa County:
$474 million in visitor spending, 4,800 jobs, and $34.9 million in state and local tax revenue
o Tuolumne County:
$222 million in visitor spending, 2,310 jobs, and $16.8 million in state and local tax revenue