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PRESS RELEASE- Downing Appointed to Special Commission to Identify & Designate 1,000 Great Places in Massachusetts
April 07, 2009

Boston- State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D-Pittsfield) has been appointed by Senate President Therese Murray (D-Plymouth) to serve on the 1,000 Great Places in Massachusetts Commission. 


“Travel and tourism and the creative economy are important economic drivers in Massachusetts,” said Downing. “This Commission will identify 1,000 special assets throughout the state that make our Commonwealth unique.  Local attractions tagged as ‘great’ will remind us why we’re proud to live in Massachusetts, and serve our economy well by drawing the attention of local and out-of-state travelers who will come to see, learn from and enjoy our greatest places.”


“From the tranquility of Provincetown to the charm of Williamstown, Massachusetts has some of the most incredible places to visit and experience.  Senator Downing represents a wealth of those great places,” said Senate President Therese Murray.  “I know he will make sure the entire Commonwealth is represented in our 1,000 great places.”


Downing represents the Berkshire, Hampshire and Franklin District, comprised of 48 western Massachusetts communities, the geographically largest district in the Massachusetts Senate.


Authorized by Chapter 9 of the Resolves of 2008, this Special Commission has been tasked with identifying, cataloguing, evaluating and designating 1,000 great places in Massachusetts.  The 13-member Commission will be made up of six legislators, the executive director of the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism, and six gubernatorial appointees representing the Commonwealth’s Regional Tourism Councils and the Massachusetts Cultural Council. 


State Senator Sonia Chang-Diaz (D-Boston) will chair the Commission.  Chang-Diaz also serves as the Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Tourism, Arts and Cultural Development.


The Commission will file the results of its investigation and any recommendations with the General Court no later than 120 days after its first meeting.




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