MLAs de­bate fund­ing for Cavendish Beach Mu­sic Fes­ti­val

Journal Pioneer - - COMMUNITY -

A $200,000 grant to the Cavendish Beach Mu­sic Fes­ti­val is a good in­vest­ment, says Tourism Min­is­ter Chris Palmer.

Last week, Palmer, the MLA for Sum­mer­side-Wil­mot, was on the floor of the P.E.I. leg­is­la­ture for a re­view of his depart­ment’s bud­get where MLAs asked about the an­nual fund­ing for the coun­try mu­sic con­certs.

Palmer said the fes­ti­val gives one of the best re­turns on in­vest­ment among the grants the depart­ment gives.

“We’re happy to con­tinue to sup­port that where we have a re­turn on it very quickly,” he said.

Over the years, the Cavendish Beach Mu­sic Fes­ti­val has been a ma­jor sum­mer draw for tens of thou­sands of coun­try mu­sic fans.

Some of the big­gest names in the in­dus­try have per­formed at the an­nual fes­ti­val. Palmer said the gov­ern­ment re­cov­ers its in­vest­ment in the fes­ti­val through tax rev­enues as­so­ci­ated with the event. Rus­tico-Emer­ald MLA Brad Trivers said the fes­ti­val has been suc­cess­ful, well at­tended and is well past the pi­lot project stage.

“How come we’re still fund­ing them at $200,000?” he asked. Trivers won­dered if the gov­ern­ment needs to keep giv­ing the fes­ti­val fund­ing, con­sid­er­ing how suc­cess­ful it has be­come. Palmer said there could be a risk if the gov­ern­ment didn’t pro­vide the fund­ing.

“Are we com­fort­able to have that risk ex­po­sure or make an in­vest­ment in some­thing that we get an al­most im­me­di­ate re­turn on?”

After fur­ther ques­tions from MLAs, Palmer agreed to com­mit to a re­view pro­gram for fund­ing to var­i­ous projects.

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