Applications are now open for the State Government’s 2017-18 Regional Events Scheme (RES).
Member for the Mining and Pastoral Region Dave Grills MLC said a total funding pool of up to $850,000 was available through the latest round of the scheme, which is jointly funded by Royalties for Regions and Tourism Western Australia.
“Organisers of events that bring visitors and vibrancy to regional Western Australia are invited to apply for sponsorship through the 2017-18 Regional Events Scheme,” Mr Grills said.
“Events are an important component of the State Government’s investment in regional tourism initiatives.
“Tourism is a vital industry for regional WA. In 2015-16, visitors spent $9.6 billion in the State including $4.5 billion in regional areas.
“Events encourage people to explore the regions, bringing huge economic, social and cultural benefits to regional communities.”
Mining and Pastoral Region events funded in the 2016-17 RES funding round include –
Barramundi Dreaming – Kununurra
A Taste of Broome – Broome
Stars on the Bastion – Wyndham
Mowanjum Festival – Mowanjum
Goldfields Cyclassic & Community Challenge – Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Menzies and Leonora
Red Earth Arts Festival – Karratha
Mr Grills said he had recently spoken in State Parliament on another matter that was undoubtedly having an impact on regional tourism.
“I strongly support recent requests by Mining and Pastoral local governments for an inquiry into regional airfares,” he said.
“Regional airfares in regional WA are among the highest in the country and are an ongoing concern for communities in places such as the Kimberley, Goldfields and Pilbara for a number of reasons, including the negative impact on local tourism.”
Nationals WA Candidate for the Kimberley Rob Houston said the high cost of air travel was a major issue in the area.
“The high prices are deterring visitors to the Kimberley and this undoubtedly has a negative impact on the local economy and tourism sector, and prevents family members and friends from visiting and local residents from travelling,” Mr Houston said.
Mr Grills said the RES strengthened WA’s exciting, year-round events calendar by helping smaller-scale and developing events to flourish.
“Improving visitor experiences is an important component in terms of creating economic and job opportunities for local communities throughout the Mining and Pastoral Region and across the State,” he said.
“Royalties for Regions is investing in regional tourism to create a strengthened regional economy and renewed social sustainability for these communities.”
Applications are open until 5pm WST on December 13, 2016 for funding between $5000 and $50,000 towards eligible regional events to be held between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018.
The RES has supported 320 events since 2011.
For more information, visit http://www.tourism.wa.gov.au/res