By Howard Fischer | Capitol Media Services via PinalCentral
Arizona’s first NCAA college basketball championship generated more than $324 million in economic impact for the state, according to a new study.
But the direct benefit in terms of money spent by visitors this past late March and early April is less, with the actual tax revenues generated just a fraction of even that.
And there is no mention of the costs of the event to state and local governments because the groups that commissioned the study didn’t ask for them.
Despite that, Gov. Doug Ducey said he considers sports events like this to be a positive for the state. He said it’s not just about generating the kind of new revenues that show up on a balance sheet but also providing a platform to lure executives of other firms to move operations here.
Michael Mokwa, a marketing professor at the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, who conducted the study with colleague Anthony Evans, acknowledged that these events are held in the winter, a time when Arizona already gets tourists.