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Photo: James Morgan

TPRT in a state of change due to pandemic and funding reduction

Change is the best word to describe how Tourisme Prescott-Russell Tourism (TPRT) is faring during 2020.

United Counties of Prescott and Russell (UCPR) council recently received a short report on the local tourism agency’s activities in 2020 and what it has planned for 2021.

In January and February of 2020, TPRT launched its new website, presented a display at the Salon du Vélo de Montréal and developed promotional materials. There were plans to participate in the Salon Aventure et Plein Air in Montréal and the Outdoor Adventure and Travel Show in Ottawa, but then the COVID-19 pandemic changed the course of local tourism for this year.

TPRT’s activities since the beginning of the pandemic have included three surveys of its members, supporting its members by sharing their messages on social media about changes to hours and services resulting from pandemic restrictions, and promoting local cycling routes.

The organization has also been participating in promotional campaigns including Fields to Forks, Narcity Québec, and 45 jours de concours avec TPRT.

Beginning in 2021, the UCPR will no longer provide regular funding to TPRT.  As a result of that change, and the continued uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, the agency will be focusing more on local marketing, strategic planning, and a revised business plan next year.

Even without the regular funding from the UCPR, TPRT and the counties will still collaborate, but on a project-by-project basis.  Also, as a result of the funding being discontinued, UCPR council is reviewing how it will be represented on the TPRT board in the future.  Currently, Alfred and Plantagenet Township Mayor Stéphane Sarrazin and Champlain Township Mayor Normand Riopel are the representatives.

TPRT’s recent budget, which covered from September 1, 2019 to August 31, 2020, resulted in lower than expected revenues but higher net income for the organization.  Projected total revenue was $440,450 and actual revenue was $317,912.11.  Out of that amount, $158,827.05 was from the UCPR.  However, expenses were down significantly.  The projected expenses were originally to match the projected revenue and be $440,450 but were actually $204,944.13, which resulted in a net income of $112,967.98.

James Morgan

James Morgan is a freelance contributor. He has worked for several print and broadcast media outlets. James loves the history, natural beauty, and people of eastern Ontario and western Quebec.

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