The City of Fernie is set to receive $439,042 to go towards projects that support tourism related infrastructure and amenities. The funding comes from the B.C. Government’s Resort Municipality Initiative (RMI) program and will allow for the implementation of several different projects, including golf course improvements, winter shuttle service, and a visitor information centre.
“This significant amount of funding from the Resort Municipality Initiative program will help beautify Fernie for the many tourists who enjoy our city,” stated Bill Bennett, Kootenay East MLA.
The RMI program is incentive driven, with contributions based on accommodation revenues from the previous year of business within 14 eligible municipalities. Throughout 2012 and 2013, the program will provide over $10 million in shared funds for B.C.’s resort-oriented municipalities.
“Our government recognizes how important a role resort municipalities play in the economic prosperity of our province,” said Pat Bell, Minister of Jobs, Tourism, and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour. “This initiative provides local governments with the financial certainty to facilitate a great visitor experience and ensure visitors will return.”
Now in its sixth year of operations, the RMI program has divvied out over $61.7 million in funds since 2007. The program deals with the unique circumstances resort-oriented municipalities encounter. It also offers an ongoing revenue stream to develop and enhance local tourism related infrastructure and amenities in an effort to grow local and regional tourism economies.
The 14 communities included in the RMI program are Fernie, Golden, Harrison Hot Springs, Invermere, Kimberley, Osoyoos, Radium Hot Springs, Revelstoke, Rossland, Sun Peaks, Tofino, Ucluelet, Valemount, and Whistler. Some of the RMI projects that have been funded throughout the municipalities include trail system maintenance, public art, visitor centre enhancements, shuttle services, and visitor sign improvements.