SHOW FUNDING SNUB SLAMMED
A TASMANIAN agricultural show society has renewed hope of building new infrastructure despite initially not meeting federal grant eligibility criteria the local MP has labelled a joke.
The Brighton Show is one of the biggest agricultural shows on the Tasmanian calendar but it was deemed to be too close to Hobart to qualify for a grant of up to $500,000 under a federal $20 million fund to bolster agricultural events across Australia.
However, this week Federal Agriculture Minister Bridget McKenzie’s office confirmed the Brighton Show could still apply for the funding.
Federal Member for Lyons, Labor’s Brian Mitchell, said the Brighton Show committee had been looking forward to applying for funding to help with its long-planned facelift of its facilities at the Pontville Showground.
However, the funding model is based on data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, which includes Brighton in the Greater Hobart area.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the fund at this year’s Burnie show.
Brighton Show president Geoff Jackson said the organisation wanted to build more sheds to house animals and displays.
“We class ourselves as a country event as do the 18,000 people who came through the gate last year,” he said.
“Because Brighton is on the outskirts of Hobart we miss out on applying for funding while Launceston and Burnie, classified as cities, do not. We are the only show in Tasmania to miss out.
“We are run by volunteers and our logo is ‘a little bit of country’,” Mr Jackson said.
Mr Mitchell will be campaigning for the grant zoning rules to be changed so the Brighton Show does not miss out due to its proximity to the state capital.
“According to the Morrison Government the Brighton Show is not rural enough to be eligible for funding under its Agriculture Show Community Grants program,” the MP said.
“The Brighton Show is the biggest and most traditional agricultural shows you will find with sheep, cattle and goats and wares of the CWA major attractions each year.
“To claim Brighton is less rural and Launceston is a joke,” Mr Mitchell said.
Some Tasmanian shown have been faceing tough times, with the Devonport Show no longer running and the Royal Launceston Show cut back to one day from two.
The Brighton Show will be held on Sunday at Pontville from 8.30am to 4pm including cattle, sheep, goats, poultry, home industries and horse classes. Cost is $10, $25 for a family, $5 for children six to 16.
We class ourselves as a country event as do the 18,000 people who came through the gate last year GEOFF JACKSON