TIAPEI recommends against proposed tourism levy

Ryan Ross
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Don Cudmore, executive director of Tourism Industry Association of P.E.I. speaks with an owner of a bed and breakfast business during a meeting in November.

The group that represents tourism operators has recommended the province not go ahead with a tourism levy after concerns were raised about bringing it in at the same time as the HST.

Don Cudmore, the Tourism Industry Association of P.E.I.’s executive director, said the group did 10 presentations to get feedback about a potential levy and see if there was support for it. That happened in November and December, but Cudmore said there were a few issues that came up.

“If there was a levy to be put in place there was a concern that perhaps not doing it at the time of the HST transition,” he said.

There are already levies in place in the province’s two cities to help with tourism marketing.

In Charlottetown, there is a three per cent levy per night while stays in Summerside have an additional two per cent charge.

The proposed provincewide levy would have been three per cent with the money going into a fund that would be handled by the regional tourism associations.

But the provincial government is bringing in HST this spring, which Cudmore said some in the tourism industry thought might cause confusion.

“That point was certainly well taken,” he said.

Cudmore said TIAPEI has asked the province to set up a short-term committee to look at ways to raise more money for marketing and product development instead of going ahead with a levy for now.

He also said there was enough consensus that a levy wouldn’t be a bad way to go at some point.

“There was major concern about the timing of it,” he said.

TIAPEI has written to Tourism Minister Robert Henderson and the regional associations about the concerns that came up through the consultations, along with a recommendation to meet as soon as possible to look at ways to raise money.

“The reality is we need to raise the money,” he said.

rross@theguardian.pe.ca

twitter.com/ryanrross

Organizations: Tourism Industry Association of P.E.I.

Geographic location: Charlottetown, Summerside

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Recent comments

  • Guy Cousineau
    February 09, 2013 - 11:17

    Making Accommodations more expensive is NOT the way to make more tourists come to PEI. At the same time as HST or not, tourism levy province wide would further handicap regional accommodations.

  • intobed
    February 08, 2013 - 13:37

    This is the same group that lobbied to have the HST force upon Islanders, even though it will hurt most of us. I don't care if they want or don't want the levy. Our taxpayer's dollars are being wasted supporting this group and its members. It is time they started paying for themselves. Bring on the levy, at 10%, and stop all government funding for them.

  • Bill Kays
    Bill Kays
    February 08, 2013 - 13:35

    Just because the government has thrown our primary industries (fishing and farming) under the bus does not mean that tourism is going to be the new golden calf. Eventually this golden calf also will be slaughtered after it is fattened up. Why can you folks not see that this government simply does not care for people, they only care for very large monopolistic corporations. We are now living under a new form of government called corporatocracy. We had been edging towards it for many years but now they have decided that we are well beyond the tipping point so it is coming more and more into the open. They are gearing up for the North American Union which will comprise of Mexico, United States, and Canada. This is why Harper has introduced those 2 massive bills, to bring us into line with the other countries and more easily facilitate the union. Think about it. While you and I think about it their plan is progressing. The United Nations and The Coucil On Foreign Relations (our real government) is the driving force behind all of this, and should be dismantled like the League of Nations before it.

  • Quiet Observer
    February 08, 2013 - 12:37

    That's right, make accommodations here 3% more expensive. that will certainly help grow tourism on PEI. Duh-uh. We're already more expensive than both NB and NS, and for average tourists that matters. You high profile big money tourists flying in here for golf or from overseas don't care. But, the bread and butter of PEI tourism, families from central and eastern Canada, do care.

  • don
    February 08, 2013 - 11:50

    if there is a levy to be done then add it to ALL stores that makes a profit from tourist's it is only fair. why should a motel help pay for add's for a pizza shack?

    • Brad
      February 09, 2013 - 05:46

      Sick and tired of tourism operators crying gov should do this should do that always to benifit themselves . Look after yourselves let the good businesses survive and the ones that don't these owners could go housekeeping for min wage for the survivors.