The CRA recently conducted a members-only online straw poll to find out what members thought about paying the Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau to plan and execute destination marketing that promotes Carmel-by-the-Sea to visiting tourists. We asked CRA members to give a simple yes or no answer. The question was: “Should the city give the Monterey Convention and Visitors Bureau $176,857 for destination marketing for the 2018/19 fiscal year?”

We didn’t request comments, but some voters volunteered their thoughts. Here is a sampler of voters’ written opinions, roughly proportional to the results of the vote. One hundred eighteen members responded, with 102 voting No (don’t give MCCVB any marketing money) and 16 voting Yes, we should pay it. That split corresponds to 86.4 percent No and 13.6 percent Yes.


“NO. The streets are so crowded with autos, and the sidewalks too crowded with lookers to be able to walk anywhere.”

“I think NO for this issue. That’s a lot of money for not knowing what it’s spent on.”

“NO. Carmel is already overrun with tourists. Our infrastructure cannot handle more. Besides, social media touts the whole Peninsula, including Carmel.”

“NO. This amount is not proportional with our need to market to new visitors.”

“YES. If that’s what we’ve been doing, then let’s keep doing it.”

“NO. Carmel is retail heaven. Business owners in this country have had a reputation for being innovative and resilient. Local business owners and the business district landlords should expect to provide for their own destination marketing. Further, destinations will draw the clientele appropriate to the nature of the destination. Owners and landlords will probably make better decisions on how to promote the business district if they use their own money.”

“No. No. No!!

“BIG GIANT NO, unless they are going to try and get rid of so many events. Kinda doubt it.”

“I vote NO. Carmel is already one giant tourist trap and it is my opinion that less tourists – oops, I mean visitors – is what is needed. Too often, the town is beyond the saturation point. This is not a good thing, and more tourists will only add to the problem. Yes, I’m aware that tourist dollars sustain the town, but at what point does too much of a good thing become a negative? I think we have already passed that point.”