INVERNESS, Fla. (AP) — Controversy over one Florida county commission’s response to being asked to pay for a digital subscription to the New York Times has spilled over into the local tourism realm.
The Citrus County Chronicle reports people are cancelling trips to Citrus County and the repercussions are being felt as far abroad as London, England.
John Pricher, director of the Citrus County Visitors Bureau, said as of Wednesday afternoon he’s received 10 anonymous and signed emails from tourists who all oppose county commissioners’ actions.
In late October, commissioners discussed whether to buy the digital subscription but didn’t make a final decision. County library officials were in favor.
Commissioner Scott Carnahan said he would vote no and that he agreed with President Donald Trump on the matter. Trump has been a vocal critic of the paper.
“I’m gonna be voting no for this. Fake news. OK? I agree with President Trump. I will not be voting for this. I do not want the New York Times in this county, OK?” Carnahan said as other commissioners laughed. “I did second it but just to have the discussion to say: I don’t agree with it, I don’t like ’em…it’s fake news and I’m voting no.”
On Nov. 19, commissioners will decide whether to take the advice of library officials and spend $2,700 annually for a digital subscription to the paper.