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August 22, 2019

7/22/2019 1:09:00 PM
Seriously consider hugging a tourist today

Dear Editor and Neighbors in Southwestern Wisconsin:
On Thursday, June 27 I was proud to sit with a few hundred of my neighbors and friends, many of whom were brave and articulate enough to speak "Truth to power" They went on record telling the Public Service Commission why American Transmission C's Cardinal-Hickory Creek Power line is not only unneeded, but unsightly. I might add that it is economically unsound in view of our most lucrative "cash cow."
Maybe you don't see tourism as a cash cow, but we all need to recognize its importance and economic value. Ask Gari Waltz how much he made from his picture postcard business. When questioned how much a "view" from just about anyplace in Wisconsin is worth, consider these facts from the publication entitled The Economic Impact of Tourism in Wisconsin, May 2019. "Visitor spending increased by $625 million in 2018., an increase of $4.1 billion since 2010." When you complain about the condition of Wisconsin roads, consider that Including indirect and induced impacts, tourism in Wisconsin generated $1.6 billion in state and local taxes and $1.2 billion in Federal taxes in 2018.
In Capital expenses Cardinal Hickory Creek will cost rate payers $500 million and Wisconsinites about $67.million. Even more important economically, the unsightly chain of wires and cement will deter Tourism which you can see is a billion dollar business. In 2018 tourism increased 4.9% over the year before to reach $13.3 billion. Tourists come for the same reasons we stay-the natural beauty, the change of seasons, the fishing, hunting, hiking, biking, canoeing, sailing, and road tripping.
Tourists come for recreational activities that sustain 199,073 jobs, either directly or indirectly. Last year their dollars spread $21.6 billion in total business sales throughout the state. Certainly we should consider embracing tourists and avoid transmission poles! Thanks, friends and neighbors, and the Dodgeville Chronicle for supporting this worthy cause to preserve our matchless Driftless Area.
Anne D. Bachner

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