Local leaders are celebrating "dramatic increases" in tourism spending in New Orleans.
"New Orleans is really on a roll right now," according to Ron Forman with the Louisiana Stadium and Exposition District. "We're bringing a lot of people in town... We're approaching 10 million visitors for the first time."
Forman says visitors are staying longer and spending more. That means more tax revenue. The LSED, which oversees the Superdome and other state owned properties, gets funding from the Hotel/Motel Tax.
"The Hotel/Motel Tax has increased dramatically," he noted.
For the 2009 fiscal year the tax generated $29 million. For the current fiscal year, the estimates are that it will bring in $46 million. That's an increase of nearly 60 percent over five years.
Forman says the growth should continue as more people come to New Orleans, pay higher room rates and spend more time in the city.
"I would like to see that number (of annual visitors) up to around 14 or 15 million," he told WWL First News.