McGuinty Government Invests In Eastern Ontario Tourism



    St. Lawrence Parks Commission Renewal Will Stimulate Local Economy

    MORRISBURG, ON, March 30 /CNW/ - The Ontario government is investing
nearly $4.3 million in the St. Lawrence Parks Commission this year to boost
tourism to Eastern Ontario and stimulate the local economy, Jim Brownell, MPP
for Stormont-Dundas-Charlottenburgh, announced today on behalf of Minister of
Tourism Jim Bradley.
    "The St. Lawrence Parks Commission is the largest tourism operator in
Eastern Ontario, with an economic impact of $100 million," said Brownell. "Our
investment will help improve the visitor experience at the park, attract more
tourists to our region and support businesses in the 16 communities that
border on the parklands, from Kingston to Cornwall."
    The Commission will receive an increase of $1.7 million to its operating
budget this year, along with a one-time strategic investment of $2.5 million
to support the renewal of its programs, facilities and attractions. Beginning
in 2007-08, the Commission will receive an annual increase of $2 million to
its operating budget, for total support from the province of $7.5 million a
year.
    "Our government recognizes the vital role the St. Lawrence Parks
Commission plays in stimulating tourism and economic activity in Eastern
Ontario," said Bradley. "Investing in its sustainability and growth will bring
new investment, jobs and economic opportunities to this region."
    As part of the Celebrate Ontario initiative to promote the development
and marketing of festivals and events across Ontario, the Commission is also
receiving $75,000 in program funding and $18,500 in marketing support for the
annual Alight at Night festival at Upper Canada Village.
    "Together with our community partners, we continually build on our
programs to enhance their appeal," said Peter Watson, Chair of the St.
Lawrence Parks Commission. "With the generous support of the Ontario
government, we look forward to strengthening our capacity to provide exciting
experiences for our visitors."

    The St. Lawrence Parks Commission is an agency of the Government of
Ontario.




For further information:

For further information: Office of Jim Brownell, MPP, Stormont - Dundas
- Charlottenburgh, (416) 212-2272

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Ontario Ministry of Tourism

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