By Anne Wallace Allen,

Scheuermann who hails from one of the state’s biggest tourism centers — Stowe — is a leader in that contest. She rallied lawmakers who have an interest in tourism last year and found so many with similar interests that she decided to create the tourism caucus. The group had its first meeting Wednesday.  Other founding members include Reps. Kathleen James, D-Manchester; Laura Sibilia, I-Dover; Kelly Pajala, I-Londonderry; Jim Harrison, R-Chittenden; John Killacky, D-South Burlington; and Charles Kimbell, D-Woodstock.

Scheuermann said in order to be heard at budget time, tourism needs a loud and focused voice. That’s what she hopes to create with the caucus. The industry is competing for lawmakers’ attention with other compelling matters like climate change and health care, she said.

“Last year I thought it would be good if we actually put faces to names and brought people to the Statehouse to share with the legislators how important the industry is to them, both employees and their families,” she said.