Rally Australia in Western Australia sign now

Western Australia's Minister for Tourism, Mark McGowan, on March 21 (2005) announced that the current Western Australian Labour Government would no longer like to hold the Australian round of the World Rally Championship.

Perth provides a unique environment for Rally Australia (with conditions found no-where else in the WRC or in Australia) and has been one of the most influential events in the World Rally Championship. It has run for the last 17 years, in large thanks to a massive base of volunteers, who's work is the reason the event has suceeded. The Confederation of Australian Motor Sport (CAMS) still has a contract to run the event in Australia, so the event is likely to move elsewhere in Australia.

If you would like to voice your protest against this decision, please sign below.

If you would like to post your comments, phone or email Mr McGowan's office directly - please use the following details:

Mark McGowan - Electorate Office:...
Vale Street, Rockingham
Rockingham WA 6168
PO Box 88, Rockingham 6168
Ph: (0 9592 7422
Fax: (0 9592 1683
Email: [email protected]

Ministerial Office:
20th Floor,
Governor Stirling Tower,
197 St Georges Terrace
Perth WA 6000
Ph: 9222 9211
Fax: 9222 9410

The press release in question:

The State Government will seek to end its contract with the motorsport event Rally Australia in 2006 in light of concerns over the economic viability of the event. Tourism Minister Mark McGowan today said the event did not deliver a sufficient return to WA taxpayers and would be discontinued. Mr McGowan said he had made the decision to redirect the $4.7million in funds towards other events and promoting WA interstate and abroad.

"The Government will meet its contractual obligations in full," he said.

"We will hold the event in 2005 and are discussing the status of 2006 with the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport (CAMS).

Mr McGowan said the State Government was obliged to give notice of its intentions directly following the next Rally event in November but had made the decision to inform the public to give people as much notice as possible.

"I am aware that Rally has been popular in the past and that many people in the community will be sad to see it go," he said.

"However, over the past 15 years, the State Government has been putting more and more money into the event to keep it going and receiving diminishing returns.

"Last year's event cost Western Australian taxpayers $5.9million to stage, but generated only $9.3million - representing $1.60 for every $1 we spent.

"In comparison, the recent Ironman WA event held in Busselton last November returned $5.2million on the Government's investment of $300,000 ($14.70 for every $1 spent).

"The Hopman Cup returns an average of $8.50 for every $1 spent each year.

"To make this event competitive with our other events, there would need to be either a 300per cent increase in revenue or a cost reduction of 62per cent."

Mr McGowan said he had asked Tourism WA to provide him with a list of taxpayer-funded events and their returns to the State.

"We have had some fantastic events over the past few years and recently acquired the Johnnie Walker Classic and the National Surf Lifesaving Championships, both of which are expected to deliver significant financial returns to the State," he said.

"The State Government will be looking for more events that showcase our natural icons and promote the State as an exciting and nature-based tourism destination."

Mr McGowan said Rally Australia had an established volunteer base in Western Australia, many of whom had dedicated years of service to the event.

"I would like to thank all the volunteers and their families for their work over the years," he said.

"It is never easy to make decisions that will upset people; however, the State Government has an obligation to spend funds wisely."

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Lesley GoodmanBy:
School and EducationIn:
Petition target:
WA Citizens

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