Arizona

Jan 2, 2013 10:49 AM by ASSOCIATED PRESS

Visitors bureau: SB1070 hinders convention business

PHOENIX - Arizona's 2010 immigration enforcement law is being called a lingering hindrance to Phoenix's ability to lure gatherings to its convention center.

Greater Phoenix Convention and Visitors Bureau spokesman Scott Dunn says a misperception that Phoenix does not value diversity is an impediment to attracting national conventions.

Dunn says many conventions are planned years ahead and that some effects of the law aren't being seen until now.

The Arizona Republic (http://bit.ly/XgSH8k ) reports that convention center bookings are down by as much as 30 percent from 2009.

The newspaper says the immigration law known as SB1070 is one of several possible factors. Others include the recession and tighter strings on corporate and government travel.

However, the Republic says other cities with comparable convention facilities have slowly rebounding or relatively flat guest counts.

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