Page 1554 - Week 05 - Thursday, 11 April 2013
I formally commend and present the ACT government response to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elected Body’s third report to the ACT government to the Assembly and the community.
Discussion of matter of public importance
MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Mr Gentleman): The Speaker has received letters from Ms Berry, Dr Bourke, Mr Coe, Mr Doszpot, Mr Gentleman, Mr Hanson, Mrs Jones, Mr Seselja, Mr Smyth and Mr Wall proposing that matters of public importance be submitted to the Assembly. In accordance with standing order 79, the Speaker has determined that the matter proposed by Ms Berry be submitted to the Assembly, namely:
The importance of major events to the ACT economy.
MS BERRY (Ginninderra) (3.52): Hosting major events is becoming increasingly important to governments and cities around Australia. Through hosting and staging major events, an opportunity exists for government to create lasting legacies that provide Canberra with an improved public image, increased reputation across Australia, community pride and long-term economic development.
The ACT government’s positive and active role has helped to attract major events to Canberra in a number of ways. One successful initiative from the ACT government is the special event fund. The fund, administered by Australian Capital Tourism, is a contestable, cooperative fund aimed at major attractions, cultural institutions, event organisations, event promoters, businesses, companies or associations. Minimum funding that can be requested from the special event fund is $200,000 with a maximum request of $500,000. All requests have to be matched with dollar for dollar support by the applicant, or by a sponsor of the applicant. Events supported by the fund have provided a significant return on investment to the ACT economy.
The National Gallery of Australia’s Renaissance exhibition of some 70 masterpieces was exclusive to Canberra and recorded a total attendance of 213,000. Out of the total visitors who came to the exhibition, 80 per cent of those who attended were from interstate. Of those interstate visitors, 81 per cent travelled to Canberra specifically for the exhibition. The average length of stay for interstate visitors was 2.75 nights and the average spend per night per person was $243. The NGA estimated that the total contribution to the ACT economy was about $75 million.
The National Library of Australia’s Handwritten exhibition of rare manuscripts spanning 10 centuries of human endeavour recorded a total attendance of 73,000. Forty-nine per cent of those who attended were from interstate, and 85 per cent of these interstate visitors stayed overnight. The average length of stay for interstate visitors was 3.8 nights and the average spend per night per person was $154. The NLA estimated that the total contribution to the ACT economy was about $18.6 million.