Thanks to our Deputy Premier, the Hon. Troy Grant MP, I am at Parliament House today meeting with the Minister for Regional Development, the Hon. John Barilaro MP, to push for funding for Evocities. The Evocities concept was launched on 22 September 2010 with significant funding from the Federal Government in addition to funding from the State Government and the seven member Councils. That funding has now dropped off and the seven Councils contribute the total marketing budget of $420,000. In advertising the Evocities in metropolitan areas, this amount of money does not deliver a lot of advertising. I am asking for the State Government to top this funding up so that we can create a more comprehensive marketing campaign and help the State Government move people from metropolitan areas to regional areas. Evocities has had great success to date and I hope the Minister will see the logic of the argument. Wish me luck!

The Dubbo Stampede launch was held yesterday morning. This event is in its fourth year and has been incredibly successful so far. The event started in 2012 with 1,500 runners and this year should see 3,400 runners. Approximately half of these runners come from outside of Dubbo giving a boost to our economy of close to a quarter of a million dollars. The event takes advantage of two of our great assets – the Zoo and the Tracker-Riley Cycleway. Council has again given them money this year from our Event Support and Development Program but, as this is the third consecutive year funding has been provided, and as this fund is designed to help start an event, they won’t be eligible to apply for funding for their event next year. The committee has done an excellent job in creating a sustainable event through sponsorship and entry fees and they are very appreciative of the financial support given to them by Council thus far – but also understand they are on their way now. I encourage residents to enter and be part of a unique running festival. I have run in the event every year so far – including the marathon last year – and I can attest to it being a fantastic event.

I hope to see a huge crowd tomorrow morning at the next Dubbo Chamber of Commerce CEO Series when we will have Grant O’Brien, CEO of Woolworths speaking. This series has been incredibly successful so far and we have had the CEOs of some of the largest companies in Australia visiting our city and speaking at these breakfasts. I will hopefully see you there.

Councillor Mathew Dickerson
Mayor of the City of Dubbo

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