Funding available for local tourism infrastructure

Electorate news
Thursday, March 16, 2017

Louise Upston, National MP for Taupo, has welcomed the opportunity for extra funding for tourism infrastructure in the south Waikato, Taupo and Cambridge redgions.

“Tourism is now a $14.5 billion export earner for New Zealand, with 188,000 people working in the industry. These visitors are incredibly important to our economy, particularly in the regions”, Ms Upston says.

“Our regions have some well-established tourist attractions. South Waikato has the cycle trail, which is becoming increasingly popular. Cambridge has been working hard on growing its tourism industry, and Taupo has a well-established tourism industry. We need to provide more core facilities in these areas to support this tourism growth and attract high-value visitors. Such facilities benefit local residents and domestic tourists, as well as our international guests.

“In the last round of funding for the Regional Mid-sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund, a total of $3 million was allocated to the best 14 projects. This saw the development of important amenities such as carparks, toilets, rubbish disposal and minor water management projects.

In that round, Taupo District Council received $118,500 for works to upgrade existing facilities, including providing toilets - which can have up to 1200 visitors per day during peak summer months.

“Due to the initial success of this scheme, an additional $5.5 million has been made available for further tourism infrastructure developments around the country. This next round of funding could be an excellent opportunity to develop or improve tourism infrastructure in our regions,” Ms Upston says.

Budget 2016 has allocated $12 million over four years for the Regional Mid-sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund. Applications for the second round of funding close on 13 April 2017 at 4pm.

If you have a project in mind that you would like to be considered, further information can be found at: http://www.mbie.govt.nz/info-services/sectors-industries/tourism/regional-mid-sized-tourism-facilities-grant-fund