Economic Development

Application Now Available for County’s 2024 3% Tourism Product Development Grant Program

Image by the Chautauqua County Visitors Bureau

JAMESTOWN, N.Y. – The Chautauqua County Department of Planning and Development is excited to announce the launch of applications for the 2024 3% Tourism Product Development Grant Program. Interested groups or organizations have until October 1, 2023 to submit applications. New this year, applications will only be available online through the Planning and Development website: planningchautauqua.com/economic-development Hard copies of the application will not be accepted.

The Tourism Product Development Grant Program is funded through the County’s 5% occupancy or “bed tax” for the rental of lodging units within the County. 60 cents from every dollar revenue that is generated from this tax is utilized to increase tourism, conventions, trade shows, special events, and other directly related or supporting activities including businesses in the county. A portion of the 3% occupancy tax is allocated to provide grants for projects that will achieve and/or support special tourism product and event development initiatives. Awards of up to $10,000 with a 1:1 match will be determined based on a project review and ranking.

Through this grant program, the County seeks to assist in catalyzing opportunities that promote or support the development of distinct themes or significant events and attractions that enhance the level of visitor experience, and ultimately the number of visitors to the County. Programs and initiatives should help create awareness of Chautauqua County as a place to visit and/or improve the likelihood of repeat visits to the area. A key objective for the future of Chautauqua County’s tourism industry is to create and promote products and experiences that will attract more visitors, particularly for overnight visits and in the pre- and post-summer seasons.

Grant funds are not intended for facility maintenance or long-term operational costs; they are intended to be developmental in nature. Some of the projects funded over the last two years were:
• Cassadaga Lakes Kayak Launch
• Boutwell Hill State Forest Overland Trail Improvement
• Banff Film Festival at the Reg Lenna
• Marketing and completion of the North Shore Arts Alliance Art Trail HUB
• Updating Facilities at the Dunkirk Lighthouse

Applications for the 3% Tourism Product Development Grant Program may be submitted by various groups and organizations, including: not-for-profits, governments, businesses/corporations, public or private schools, and all landowners of Chautauqua County. For more information, please contact Nate Aldrich at (716) 363-3672 or aldrichn@chqgov.com.