James.qxp Nov Dec 2018 web - Page 17

removed the sales tax on tickets for major sporting events.
And the state’s investment in Mercedes-Benz Stadium and
the Georgia World Congress Center make Atlanta a prime
location to host major sporting events. Atlanta’s city leaders are also proven partners.
The return on these
events far outweighs the
investment. According to an
estimate by Tom
Cunningham, the Metro
Atlanta Chamber’s chief
economist, the Super Bowl’s
economic impact could reach
nearly $400 million. And that
figure doesn’t account for the
earned media generated by
the wall-to-wall Super Bowl
LIII coverage. It is priceless
marketing for this region and
state that’s worth far more than we could ever afford to
pay. But there is real expectation that these events are
going to become even more expensive to host in the future
as security costs and other expenses continue to escalate.
One strategy we must consider is building on the
strong state, local and private sector cooperation by
developing a long-term public-private partnership that
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gives event owners certainty that the financial resources
are available to host major events year in and year out.
This cannot be achieved without the cooperation of business and government leaders.
We could never have realized these big wins were it
not for the foresight of our
leaders past and present.
We’ve invested in world-class
facilities; we’ve invested in
transportation improvements;
we created the best business
climate in the nation.
Next, we should seize the
opportunity in front of us to
advertise all the positives
that our state has to offer and
develop new strategies that
will help us continue building on the successful run we are currently experiencing.
And in the meantime, we’ll keep working to book the
next major sporting event.
Dan Corso is president of the Atlanta Sports Council and chairman of
the Atlanta Super Bowl Host Committee. Marshall Guest is vice president of business climate for the Metro Atlanta Chamber.
N OV E M B E R / D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 8


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