Have you ever wondered how a community like Canmore, Banff, or Jasper can afford to provide the high caliber destination amenities necessary to for a successful tourism economy? In these communities, the size of the tax base is relatively small compared to the large demands on our infrastructure and amenities. To remedy this, the mayors and CAOs from the three municipalities have been working together to advocate at the provincial government level for additional revenue tools.
Recently, the towns of Canmore, Banff and Jasper secured a regional collaboration grant to complete two studies aimed at quantifying the sustainable funding challenges facing our municipalities:
- researched and benchmarked infrastructure and program expenditures in tourism-based communities relative to similarly sized Alberta municipalities, and
- researched the types of revenue tools available to tourism destinations in the US and British Columbia.
- defined the economic contribution of tourism relative to the broader economy, and
- provided a understanding of tax revenue raised relative to benefits received locally.
Next, the mayors and CAOs of Canmore, Banff and Jasper will seeking meetings with the ministers of Municipal Affairs, Alberta Tourism and the Treasury Branch, as well as with our local MLA and MP, to review the findings of these reports and continue advocating for appropriate revenue tools.