March 10, 2008
QUESTIONS FOR CONNECTICUT COMMISSION ON CULTURE AND TOURISM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR NOMINEE
By: John Rappa, Principal Analyst
Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism, Executive Director, (CGS § 10-393)
The executive director implements the state's policies and programs for attracting tourists to Connecticut; promoting the state's arts, history, and culture; supporting the film industry and administering the movie and digital media production tax credits; and preserving historic properties. The director answers to a 35-member commission, which consists of 30 voting members and five non-voting ex officio members. The governor and legislative leaders appoint the voting members, who annually elect the commission's chairperson and other officers.
1. The commission's charge is to preserve and promote the state's cultural and tourism assets. Why do these assets require the state's attention? Why can't they preserve and promote themselves?
2. How much do culture and tourism assets contribute to the state's economy? If we think of these assets as businesses, are they capturing their potential market share? How can the commission help them do so?
3. How does the commission track and evaluate trends affecting the culture and tourism sector? Do you see any emerging trends that could benefit or harm this sector?
4. How will current and projected demographic changes affect Connecticut's culture and tourism policies and programs? For example, does the growing elderly and Hispanic population require the state to develop new cultural and tourism assets and market and promote the existing ones differently?
5. Many of Connecticut's cultural assets are housed in small museums run by nonprofit organizations with limited staff and revenues. Where do these organizations obtain most of the capital needed to maintain or expand their facilities? How can the commission help them operate more efficiently and generate their own revenues?
6. Connecticut, like several other northeast states, recently entered the movie business. Why are moviemakers looking beyond Hollywood? How is the movie industry changing and how can the state take advantage of those changes?
7. How have gasoline prices affected our cultural and tourism industries? Are our attractions drawing fewer out-of-state visitors?
8. The commission covers several broad areas—arts, film, historic preservation and museums, and tourism. Does the commission have enough staff to fulfill its responsibilities in each of these areas? How many staff people are assigned to each area? Are they cross-trained?
9. The Commerce Committee is considering a bill to establish a sports advisory board to develop and promote the state's sports industry. Does the state need an advisory board for this purpose or does the industry have the means to promote itself?