Mr. Sparky

FLORIDA – Governor Rick Scott’s request for lawmakers to boost tourism marketing by $24 million next year might be a tough sell in the House.

Members of the House Transportation & Tourism Appropriations Subcommittee says Visit Florida would have to justify the proposed increase by showing how many of the 112.3 million visitors last year, and 88.2 million so far this year came to Florida because of the agency’s marketing efforts.

Other members of the panel questioned if the state has the money available to spend.

According to the Herald-Tribune, lawmakers provided $76 million to Visit Florida during the current fiscal year, Scott has requested $100 million for the fiscal year that will start July 1.

Lawmakers will consider the funding request during the legislative session that starts January 9.