Las Vegas tourism agency to spend $119 million on advertising, marketing

Tourists pose in front of the iconic Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign Tuesday, March 6, 2012.

The group that promotes Las Vegas tourism expects a slight bump in revenue next year, but is trimming its advertising and marketing costs.

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority unveiled its fiscal 2015 spending plan today. The board of directors is scheduled to vote on the package May 15.

As outlined by Rana Lacer, senior vice president of finance, revenue for the LVCVA’s main pot of money — the general fund — is expected to reach $273.4 million in the fiscal year starting July 1, up 2 percent from the current fiscal year.

At the same time, the group will spend $276.5 million, down 0.1 percent.

Besides serving as Southern Nevada’s chief tourism promoter, the LVCVA also operates the 3.2-million-square-foot Las Vegas Convention Center and the 483,000-square-foot Cashman Center near downtown.

The authority’s spending plan calls for $214.8 million in general operating costs, such as salaries and benefits; $74.7 million in capital expenses, such as facility projects; and $63.4 million in debt payments.

Within the general operating budget, the LVCVA plans to spend $91 million on advertising, down 2 percent from 2014, and $28.8 million on marketing, also down 2 percent.

Lacer attributed the dip in part to a one-time burst of $1 million in spending last year for the World Routes airline conference in Las Vegas that apparently will not be renewed.

Hotel room taxes are expected to fund 81 percent of the group’s operating budget next year, followed by facility rentals at 17 percent.

Lacer forecasts the group will collect $221.6 million in room tax revenue next year, a record amount for the LVCVA.