Florida shifts marketing

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After more than four years of study and lobbying, the Florida legislature has dissolved the state's Department of Commerce and turned over state marketing functions to the Florida Commission on Tourism, creating the nation's first public/private partnership for tourism marketing.

Effective July 1, the commission will have the authority to administer Florida's marketing programs, combining the state's $16 million marketing budget with private funds from tourism-related companies statewide. The new commission will review all current contracts, including the state's ad contract with Fahlgren Benito, Tampa.

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