Constituency question

October 6, 2021

My constituency question is to the Minister for Tourism regarding the City of Whittlesea’s call for a Regional Tourism Board to be established for (metropolitan boundary) interface councils.

The City of Whittlesea recorded almost 4000 job losses in the retail trade, accommodation and food services sector in 2020 and estimated a further 7000 could be lost in 2021.

These jobs support the city’s visitor economy and provide entry-level positions in the community, particularly for young people. Cancellation of major events included their Country Music Festival, rodeo, the Whittlesea Show and the ‘Table of Plenty’, as well as smaller community events, festivals and cultural heritage programs.

Since Destination Melbourne was discontinued in 2019 there has been nothing in place for interface councils to unlock their opportunities. The Visitor Economy Recovery and Reform Plan will reimagine Regional Tourism Boards into Visitor Economy Partnerships and I hope will include interface councils, but this is not clear.

So I ask the Minister: will there be a Visitor Economy Partnership specific to interface councils?