Milam: Ad campaign needed to boost Shore in wake of Sandy

TRENTON – Assemblyman Matthew Milam, (D-1), Cape May, hopes there is enough bipartisan support for a bill (A3630) he’s a sponsor of to fund a $20 million advertising campaign that would help remind potential visitors the Jersey Shore is open for business.

When asked about the possible challenge such a bill poses, given the state’s budget problems and smaller than projected revenues, Milam said he’s an “optimistic person,” adding that enough elected officials care enough about the tourism industry, given that it’s one of the most important revenue sources.

He said he hopes to speak to Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, who doubles as Secretary of State, about the need for a tourism ad campaign.

Tourism officials, mostly from the Cape May and Atlantic City areas, vouched support for the bill, adding that there’s a big misperception that the Shore areas were damaged to such a degree that they don’t merit a visit. Nothing could be further from the truth, they said today.

Specifically, A3630 calls for appropriating $20 million from the general fund to the Department of State for travel and tourism advertising and promotion to communicate that New Jersey’s tourism destinations are operational despite damage caused by Superstorm Sandy.

The bill has bipartisan support, with Assemblyman David Wolfe, (R-10), Brick, among the sponsors. Other sponsors include Assembly members Lou Greenwald, (D-6), Voorhees;  Nelson Albano, (D-1); John Burzichelli, (D-3), Paulsboro; and Ruben Ramos, (D-33), Hoboken. Milam: Ad campaign needed to boost Shore in wake of Sandy