Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser addressed concerns that COVID-19 could cause a significant disruption in the state’s tourism industry.

Nungesser says he doesn’t see a need to announce any festival cancellations unless the feds or Governor call for cancellations. He says we owe it to the industry not to disrupt tourism unless necessary.

“The minute we start sending the message out that we are canceling things, everyone coming to Louisiana is going to have reason to pause, or cancel their trip,” says Nungesser.

To compensate for potentially declining international tourism, the Lt. Governor plans to reallocate advertising to areas within driving distance of the state.

Nungesser says prematurely ending the spring tourism season without good cause could put a lot of companies out of business.

“This is a time of year when the tourism industry makes their money. Many businesses won’t make it through the summer even if they have a good this time of year,” says Nungesser.

The state’s six presumptive cases all center on the New Orleans area, and Mayor Layota Cantrell canceled a number of city events in response. Nungesser disagrees with that call.

“I just hope that decision does not have a ripple effect in the convention industry in New Orleans,” says Nungesser.

The St. Patrick’s Day Parade was one of the events canceled, but just up the road in Baton Rouge, the celebration is still on.