State Tourism Assessment Program: Solvang Business Notification

Jul 16, 2018

State Tourism Assessment Program: Solvang Business Notification!

You may or may not have already received letters from both the Office of Tourism and Visit California (the state’s tourism marketing organization) notifying local business owners to fill out a form and of a potential assessment fee. This state-wide assessment has been and remains a law as mandated in the Tourism Marketing Act of 1995. However, this may be new to you!


Attached HERE is general information about the Tourism Assessment Program and the introductory communication sent to newly identified businesses, or businesses with whom the Office of Tourism has not reached out to in recent years, as well as a general FAQ and contact information.This law requires identified businesses who benefit from travel and tourism to complete a Tourism Assessment Form. Completing a form does not automatically require payment – as that is determined by a percentage of your gross “tourism-generated” revenues over $1,000,000.

The Solvang Chamber of Commerce, Solvang CVB and Visit the Santa Ynez Valley have been made aware of new notices arriving in Solvang and the SYV. Even though we are not regulatory agencies, together we want businesses to feel informed and empowered to support their partnership with Visit California’s marketing efforts on behalf of us all. This partnership continues to drive market share with $132.4B travel-related spend in CA, $10.9B in state and local tax revenue and over 1.1 Million employed in 2017 (over 1,000 in Solvang alone). Thank you all for being essential partners in a multi-tiered commitment to maintaining Solvang’s #1 industry: tourism.  

Please contact Amy Chambers, Tourism Assessment Program Manager at the Office of Tourism directly if you have any questions ( [email protected]). Together, we are always stronger.


(link to this information above)


Thank you for asking the question “What is the Office of Tourism?”. Please review the below information to learn more about the Office of Tourism, the Tourism Assessment Program and how both are related to Visit California. 


What is the California Office of Tourism?

The California Office of Tourism is a department within the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development that supports the promotion of California as a global tourism destination and provides information services to visitors. The Office of Tourism works in close coordination with the California Travel and Tourism Commission, doing business as Visit California, to facilitate travel to California.


What does the California Office of Tourism do?

The California Office of Tourism supports California programs that benefit the state’s travel and tourism industry. One of these programs is the Tourism Assessment Program.


Tourism Assessment Program

The California Tourism Marketing Act of 1995 enabled the state’s tourism industry to assess itself to conduct statewide marketing. In 1998, the industry voted to pass the first industrywide referendum, creating the Tourism Assessment Program and establishing the California Travel and Tourism Commission as the first-of-its-kind destination marketing organization in the nation. California businesses participating in the program are identified as part of five travel and tourism industry categories: accommodations; attractions and recreation; restaurants and retail; transportation and travel services; and passenger rental cars. The Office of Tourism manages the Tourism Assessment Program and collects the funds that power Visit California’s global marketing efforts (learn more at


What is Visit California?

Visit California is the official tourism marketing department for the state. They work to encourage travelers to choose California as their destination for vacation. They collaborate with local tourism bureaus and have offices in 13 international countries. All of  Visit California’s team members across the globe are promoting California to travelers or businesses that organize travel in an effort to encourage more visitation to the state. Visit California is funded by tourism businesses across California including hotels, rental car companies, attractions, restaurants, retail shops and tour operators. That funding allows for the holistic promotion of the state through campaigns and initiatives that individual tourism businesses would not have the resources to conduct on their own.



Links to the California Tourism Marketing Act:


Government Code:


CA Code of Regulations:


Thank you,


Amy Chambers

Tourism Assessment Program Manager

California Welcome Center Program Manager


Office of Tourism

Direct: 916.233.0275 • Main: 916.322.1266 • Fax: 916.322.3402

PO BOX 101711 • Pasadena, CA 91189-1711



Information to assist with meeting program requirements is available below:

What is an assessable business location?How is the assessment calculated?Assessment TerminologyAssessment Forms

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