Ford Government Funding Local Festivals And Events After Announcing Municipality Tourism Cuts

Published May 23, 2019 at 1:51 pm


Tourism supports nearly 390,000 jobs and generates over $34 billion of economic activity in Ontario. It is one of the world’s fastest-growing industries. Despite these facts, Tourism Toronto, which helps fund other cities through the Regional Tourism Organization funding, announced that they will no longer be receiving funding from the Ontario government starting next year.

Recently, the Ontario government has announced that they will be investing over $13 million in over 250 festivals and events in communities across the province. They will also give an additional $4 million to fund Blockbuster events.

They aim to create jobs and drive local tourism with funding. This alternate way of funding puts the decision in the hands of the Ontario government instead of municipalities.

At a public meeting at the Royal Botanical Gardens, Michael Tibollo, the minister of tourism, culture and sport, and Burlington MPP Jane McKenna announced funding for Celebrate Ontario 2019.

Celebrate Ontario supports local festivals and events of all sizes to reach new audiences, improve programs for visitors, benefit local economies, and create new jobs. According to the government, every dollar invested through Celebrate Ontario results in almost $21 of visitor spending.

“By investing in festivals and events, our government is tapping into the economic potential of the tourism industry. As we develop Ontario’s new tourism strategy, we will continue to invest in programs like Celebrate Ontario that help to maximize the growth and competitiveness of the great festivals and events that take place throughout the province,” said Minister Tibollo.

The Celebrate Ontario Blockbuster category supports either a major or recurring national and international events in Ontario.

“Through Celebrate Ontario, we are making strategic investments to support festivals and events across the province. This program sends a message that we are backing our great local festivals and ensuring Ontario is open for business,” said MPP McKenna.

The government will announce the recipients of this funding in the upcoming days.

What do you think of this alternate way of funding local tourism?

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