Another hit to tourism
by Terry McQuitty
Looks like the tourism industry in our area will be taking another hit. Peterborough This Week reported that the Greater Peterborough Area Economic Development Corporation (GPAEDC) will be making substantial cutbacks to the visitor centre in Peterborough due to a decrease in outside funding. According to Tom Sayer, chair of the GPAEDC the organization is dealing with a $2 million shortfall in funding.
Sayer stated that losing $2 million in two years has forced the organization to focus funds in other areas of economic development. This is wonderful news to tourism operators who are already reeling from the proposed rate increases on the Trent-Severn Waterway.
It would appear that our Economic Development Corporation was a little short sighted when it came to planning the extravagant visitor centre located in the South end of Peterborough. Looks like the entire business plan was based on funding from outside sources. You would have to have been living under a rock for the past five years if you didnít see cuts in spending from both the Federal and Provincial governments on the horizon. It is also a little disheartening that the organization developed to spur on economic development canít even support itself.
You only have to look to the Buckhorn District Tourist Association (BDTA) to see that an organization can be self supporting. Infrastructure money was received to build the new Welcome Centre in Buckhorn, but all the operating costs are carried by the BDTA. How is this possible for a small organization with approximately 150 members, but not by the GPAEDC which is funded by both the City and the County?
Tourism may seem like an off-shoot to businesses in the City of Peterborough, but in the County, tourism is one of the main economic drivers. Before the GPAEDC throws another wrench in to the wheels of tourism, it might want to take another look at how this decision will affect the areas surrounding the city.
Copyright 2010 Lakefield Herald Ltd.
Return to The Herald Home Page