After four months of controversy over its proposed budget, Florida legislators cut a deal in special session to give Visit Florida $76 million in funding for 2017-18. That level is the same as last fiscal year’s, although the governor had initially proposed an increase to $100 million.
However, restrictions are included in the budget awaiting the governor’s signature.
Several of the new provisions:
- Visit Florida employees, including president/CEO, may not receive public compensation that exceeds the salary and benefits authorized to the governor. *
- Public payments of performance bonuses or severance pay to a Visit Florida employee are prohibited unless specifically authorized by law.
- Member organizations that receive 50 percent or more of their revenue from the tourism development tax would be required to disclose their board of directors’ salaries.
- Accommodation expenses for any Visit Florida employee on business must be under $150 per diem.
- Visit Florida’s funding is tied to a one-to-one match of all public and private contributions it receives.
- All contracts worth $750K or more are subject to approval by a legislative panel.
- Contracts of $500K or more must be published on the Visit Florida website at least 14 days prior to execution.
Read more from Meetings & Conventions here.