“In a nut shell…a fabulous start,” said Donna Gault, chair of the District of Port Hardy’s new Tourism Advisory Committee.
The fledgling group held its inaugural meeting June 16 to discuss the concept and Gault was acclaimed Chair. The group has met several times since then.
“I am excited. It is a new beginning for the District of Port Hardy Tourism Advisory Committee,” said Gault. “The District recognizes the importance of tourism and wants to participate at the committee level.
“They are looking for advice from the accommodation providers as well as directions for the marketing plan,” she said.
The purpose of the committee is to enhance marketing and to increase tourism. In order to achieve this, the committee’s first order of business will be to negotiate an increase of the Municipal Regional District Tax (Hotel Tax) from two per cent to three per cent for the next five years, with the extra dollars being used exclusively for marketing.
“We are asking for three per cent to give us that little extra to make things happen for Port Hardy,” said Gault.
The committee consists of a minimum of six members including two district councillors, the Chief Financial Officer, the Director of Finance, and representatives from Vancouver Island North Tourism, Tourism Port Hardy, Visitor Information Centre, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Tourism Stakeholders Group.
At their regular council meeting July 19, council appointed Mike Kelly (Tides & Tales, Codfather Charters) to the committee.
“There was very little catch up for most of the committee members as they were involved already in Tourism Port Hardy, so it was a quick get set, ready and go,” Gault said.
“We are looking for more input and will be consulting with the accommodation providers shortly,” she added.
The committee will report to council.