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San Diego tourism agency offers Comic-Con $500K to stay in San Diego

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SAN DIEGO — A San Diego nonprofit tourism agency is offering Comic-Con organizers $500,000 in perks over five years to keep the event in town.

SAN DIEGO — A San Diego nonprofit tourism agency is offering Comic-Con organizers $500,000 in perks over five years to keep the event in town.

Los Angeles and Anaheim tourism officials have made pitches to land to popular event, which started out as a comic book fair in 1970 and morphed into a super hero for convention bookers.

Comic-Con, set for July 22-25, now draws more than 125,000 attendees each summer.

At the urging of the San Diego Convention Center officials and Mayor Jerry Sanders, the nonprofit Tourism Marking District agreed to budget $100,000 annually over a five-year period for Comic-Con, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

Hoteliers formed the coalition three years ago to boost tourism with money raised by a 2 percent surcharge on city hotel rooms.

The offer is meant to help defray shuttle costs during the four-day event, among other things.

A decision about convention’s future home is expected within the next few weeks. Anaheim and Los Angeles tourism officials have made proposals to land Comic-Con, beginning in 2013.