CHARLOTTE HARBOR & THE GULF ISLANDS, Fla. (February 14, 2013) – Today the Charlotte Harbor Visitor & Convention Bureau announced Tourist Development Tax Revenues collected for December 2012 totaled $200,014 which is up more than 22 percent over December 2011 ($163,828). Quarter 4 collections for 2012 were up 13 percent compared to the same time in 2011. For Fiscal Year 2011-2012, Charlotte County Tourist Development Tax Revenues totaled $2,388,814 which is the most the County has ever collected.

“Compared to the same time last year, Charlotte County saw an increase in tourist development tax collections and visitation during December,” said Lorah Steiner, Director of the Charlotte Harbor Visitor & Convention Bureau, “From what we are hearing from area accommodations, we are cautiously optimistic we will continue seeing this trend throughout the rest of the winter season.”

Charlotte County levies a 5 percent tourist development tax (TDT) on accommodation stays 6 months or less in addition to the 7 percent sales tax. The first 3 percent is spent for tourism promotion and marketing support and the fourth and fifth percent are used to fund the debt for the bond for the recent renovations at the Charlotte Sports Park.

Mission of the Charlotte Harbor Visitor and Convention Bureau is to brand, market and sell the area globally as Florida’s premier eco-tourism, leisure, and meeting and conference destination for the continual economic benefit of the community.

About Charlotte Harbor & the Gulf Islands
Located halfway between Tampa and Naples on the Southwest Florida Gulf coast, Charlotte Harbor & the Gulf Islands is a charming collection of nine coastal communities surrounding the state’s second largest harbor. Florida’s premier year-round eco-tourism destination, Charlotte Harbor & the Gulf Islands offers a pristine unspoiled beauty that has served as the backdrop for seven major feature films as well as countless memorable vacations. A haven for outdoor enthusiasts, Charlotte Harbor & the Gulf Islands has been named to SAIL magazine’s “10 Greatest Places to Sail in the United States,” ranked by Golf Digest as “Third Best Place to Live and Play Golf in America,” and rated by MONEY magazine as one of the “Best Places to Live in the South.” The city of Punta Gorda was named in one of “Top Ten Places to Retire Healthy” by U.S. News & World Report. Englewood was named as #2 of the Top Ten emerging travel destinations in the U.S. by TripAdvisor.com.

For information about area events, activities and attractions, contact the Charlotte Harbor Visitor & Convention Bureau, 18500 Murdock Circle, Suite B104, Port Charlotte, FL 33948; 941-743-1900, or call toll free at 1-800-652-6090 for a free Visitor’s Guide; or visit the Web site at www.CharlotteHarborTravel.com.

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Contact:
Jennifer Huber
Tourism Public Relations Manager
Tel: (941) 743-1900
Charlotte Harbor Visitor
& Convention Bureau
18500 Murdock Circle, Suite B104
Port Charlotte, FL 33948
941-743-1900, FAX: 941-764-4932
www.CharlotteHarborTravel.com
Jennifer.Huber@CharlotteFL.com