H.B. 2894 relates to the State Matching Grant Program for tourist attractions and to the financing of the State Tourism Fund.
State Matching Tourism Grant Program Issues. H.B. 2894 would abolish the Kansas Tourism Attraction Evaluation Committee and would transfer most of its functions to the Council on Travel and Tourism. A committee selected from the Council (four voting members and one ex officio member) would screen, evaluate, and approve or disapprove tourist attraction matching grants applications. After the committee had screened and evaluated the applications, it would by majority vote recommend budget expenditures from the Kansas Tourist Attraction Matching Grant Development Fund, with final approval by the Secretary of Commerce and Housing. No expenditure could be made from the Fund without the Council's recommendation. If the Secretary vetoed a recommendation, the Council could override the veto by a two-thirds vote.
The Secretary of Commerce and Housing would be required to adopt the rules and regulations existing for the former Evaluation Committee to guide the Travel and Tourism Council when screening and evaluating applications for matching grants.
The Kansas Tourism Attraction Evaluation Committee currently has the duty to provide technical advice upon request to any local tourist attraction upon ways to improve its operation. This duty would be abolished and would not be transferred to the Council on Travel and Tourism.
State Tourism Fund Issues. Provisions relating to state tourism funding matters would:
This bill was requested and supported by the Director of Travel and Tourism and Film Services and grew out of recommendations of Kansas, Inc. to eliminate the duty of the Kansas Tourism Attraction Evaluation Committee to advise local tourist attractions and to clarify that final approval and award of tourism attraction grants is vested in the Secretary of Commerce and Housing.
The House Committee amended the bill to shift the duties, other than to advise local tourist attractions, to the Kansas Tourism Council; to require the Secretary of Commerce and Housing to revise the rules and regulations to conform to the change; and to give the Council authority to expend the Fund similar to the authority the Committee would give the Council in H.B. 2764, as amended by the Committee.
The Senate Committee amendments would:
The other amendment would make the act effective upon publication in the Kansas Register. A final amendment was technical.
1. *Supplemental notes are prepared by the Legislative Research Department and do not express legislative intent. The supplemental note and fiscal note for this bill may be accessed on the Internet at http://www.ink.org/public/legislative/fulltext-bill.html.