Local Government Tourism Funding

The Hon. JAN BARHAM: My question is directed to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services representing the Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality and Racing. Will the Minister advise whether a new funding source will be made available to local government authorities in popular tourism areas to assist with infrastructure upgrades and maintenance in recognition of councils’ role in maintaining facilities used by both residents and visitors and given their constrained budgets and the fact that they do not receive funding for tourism?

The Hon. MICHAEL GALLACHER: I thank the honourable member for her question. I am sure the Hon. Greg Donnelly would be able to give a detailed answer if he was a Minister, but, sadly, he never will be. I will, however, get an answer from the appropriate Minister and provide it to the member.

ANSWER

The Hon. MICHAEL GALLACHER: On 4 August 2011 the Hon. Jan Barham asked me, representing the Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality and Racing, a question regarding local government funding. The Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality and Racing has provided the following response: 

I thank the Honourable Member for her question.

In our first 100 days, we commenced implementation on our election promises to double overnight visitor expenditure in NSW by 2020 and to build a world class convention centre.

Destination NSW combines the State’s events and tourism resources into a new, single statutory authority governed by a Board of Management.

As you would know another election commitment that we have met in the budget is to provide Regional Tourism Organisations with an extra $5 million on top of the existing regional tourism budgets to develop local tourism infrastructure.

This funding will equate to $250,000 each with a balance available for joint projects. We strongly encourage local councils to work with the Regional Tourism Organisations to cooperatively develop priorities for the expenditure of our funding boost.