Osoyoos will receive $403,692 for projects that help support tourism infrastructure and amenities, MLA for Boundary-Similkameen Linda Larson announced today.
The funding comes from the government’s Resort Municipality Initiative (RMI), which helps to grow the tourism sector in eligible municipalities. This year, the B.C. government is providing a total of $10.5 million to 14 eligible communities and is extending the RMI program for another year to the end of 2017.
Municipalities eligible for RMI funding are Fernie, Golden, Harrison Hot Springs, Invermere, Kimberley, Osoyoos, Radium Hot Springs, Revelstoke, Rossland, Sun Peaks, Tofino, Ucluelet, Valemount and Whistler.
More than $98.1 million in RMI funding has been invested since 2006 to support tourism infrastructure and programs, helping to grow these local and regional economies.
Osoyoos has been participating in the RMI program since 2008. It has prioritized its RMI funding on projects that expand recreational opportunities and encourage visitors to return to the community including major improvements to its waterfront area, Gyro Beach. Improvements include a lighted stone walkway, boardwalk, additional benches, trees and extensive landscaping. RMI funding is also being used for public art and improvements to local trails and the marina.
Tourism is one of the sectors identified in the BC Jobs Plan which continues to build on the strengths of eight of the province’s most-competitive sectors, utilizing B.C.’s educated and skilled workforce, keeping the economy diverse, strong and growing.
The B.C. tourism industry created 132,200 jobs and generated $13.9 billion in revenues in 2013. RMI supports the BC Jobs Plan and Gaining the Edge: B.C.’s Tourism Strategy by helping resort-based municipalities address the unique challenges they face as seasonally dependent economies. In addition to RMI funding, the Province invests more than $90 million annually in the tourism sector throughout B.C.
Linda Larson, MLA for Boundary-Similkameen –
“Since 2008 the RMI program has enabled Osoyoos to greatly enhance its tourism infrastructure. Tourism is a key economic driver for the region, and I am proud that our government continues to fund improvements that will entice visitors to keep coming back.”
Mayor Sue McKortoff, Town of Osoyoos –
“For small communities where tourism is the biggest economic driver, RMI funding is crucial to expanding and upgrading local facilities. This program has allowed our resort town to improve parks, trails, the marina, keep beaches clean, and provide sites for boat trailer parking.”
- Osoyoos is receiving $403,692 for FY 2015-16 and has received a total of $2,659,190 since 2008.
- More than $98.1 million in RMI funding has been invested since 2006 to support tourism infrastructure and programs, helping to grow these communities’ local and regional economies.
- In 2014, 4.7 million international visitors came to B.C. – a 5.3% increase and nearly a quarter of a million more people than the previous year.
- In 2013, tourism provided a direct contribution to B.C.’s gross domestic product of $7.3 billion, accounting for 4% of the province’s total GDP.
- In 2013, the tourism sector employed 132,200 British Columbians – that is about one in every 15 jobs in B.C.
BC Jobs Plan: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/bcjobsplan/
To learn more about the Resort Municipality Initiative, visit: http://ow.ly/R0k5j