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Home » » Schoharie County's Thriving Tourism Shields Every Household with a $900 Annual Tax Savings

Schoharie County's Thriving Tourism Shields Every Household with a $900 Annual Tax Savings

Written By Editor on 10/15/23 | 10/15/23

SCHOHARIE COUNTY, October 2023 – The enchanting allure of Schoharie County has not only captivated the hearts of visitors but also woven a financial safeguard for its residents, as unveiled by the latest tourism impact report. The burgeoning visitor economy is not merely a flourishing spectacle in the Central New York region but a pivotal economic pillar for Schoharie County itself.

"Schoharie County, with its rich tapestry of natural beauty and cultural heritage, has always been a magnet for potential and prosperity. The recent data underscores the undeniable truth that our visitors are not just guests but invaluable investors, casting a positive ripple effect across our small businesses, tax base, and overall local economy," articulated Cassandra Harrington, CEO of the Destination Marketing Corporation for Otsego and Schoharie Counties. "In the era of remote work, our rural charm is not just a sanctuary for tourists but also a beckoning call for potential future residents, offering the pristine air, water, and expansive open spaces that are becoming increasingly coveted."

Key Findings from the recent Tourism Impact Report:

  • Without tourism-generated state and local taxes, the average household in the county would have to pay an additional $933 to maintain the same level of government revenue.
  • The Central New York region saw a direct tourism spend of $3.5 billion in 2022.
  • Within the county, travelers spent a noteworthy $95 million, with lodging and second homes accounting for $30 million each, a 135% increase over 2019
  • Significant spending was also noted in the food & beverage sector, registering $17 million, retail and service stations $10 million, and food and beverage amassing $2 million in spending.
  • The tourism sector bolstered labor income in Schoharie, recording a healthy $23.2 million.

In early 2023, the Destination Marketing Corporation (DMC) for Otsego and Schoharie County saw the need for a comprehensive review of its tourism potential and sought the expertise of Famous Destination Marketing, Inc., directed by the well-traveled and seasoned professional, Josiah Brown. Often referred to as “The New York Sherpa” due to his staggering 800,000-mile journey across New York State and much of the U.S., Brown's extensive experience with marketing and assessments of rural communities in over 46 states has provided him a rich tapestry of case studies to draw from. A major outcome of the assessment was the realization that Schoharie County is ripe for a rebrand, especially in adjusting to the shifts in the post-pandemic marketplace. This analysis, while critical, offers a roadmap to harness the untapped potential of the region and design a brighter, more vibrant future for its visitor economy.

"We've noticed a gap in brand recognition when it comes to our county's name," added Josiah Brown, The New York Sherpa. "Our vision is to have a brand that resonates, is memorable, and piques interest.

The future strategy involves corridor-driven marketing, leveraging micro-influencers, and content generation over traditional advertising. Event-based tourism is also in the cards, with plans to incentivize events that pull attendees from over 50 miles away.

"Tourism is more than just numbers; it's about community growth, opportunity, and prosperity. We are on the cusp of transforming Schoharie County into a premier destination, bringing benefits not just for tourists but also enhancing the quality of place for our residents," concluded Ms. Harrington, CEO of Destination Marketing Corporation (DMC).

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