Marketing push for Albury's retail sector

A COMPREHENSIVE marketing and promotion plan might be developed for Albury’s central business district.

The plan would be added to a review next financial year of the retail sector development strategy covering the whole city.

This proposal will be decided on at Albury Council’s meeting tonight, as will a proposal to give Albury Central $25,000 over the next two years.

The money — $15,000 for 2014-15 and another $10,000 for the following year — would cover administration costs.

In a report, economic development and tourism director Tracey Squire referred to a presentation made early last month by members of the traders’ group’s board.

Ms Squire said a council workshop was told of how the board presented an overview of its achievements in the previous 18 months, plus its plans for next year.

“In doing so it requested $25,000 and $11,000 cash and $6000 (of) in-kind support for its annual Applause Festival, although a specific timeline for funding was not proposed,” she said.

Ms Squire said the request was for a continuation of “historic funding levels”.

“Based on the information provided by Albury Central, it appears the focus of the organisation looking forward is to build on its events, build the digital economy skills of its members, maintain key stakeholder relations and continue to support the implementation of (Albury Council) plans and strategies,” she said.

Ms Squire recommended the festival be fully funded by revenue generated by the promotional special rate.

She said the rate generated funding for promotional activities in central Albury.

The rate raised $126,526 in 2010-11, rising to an estimated $142,199 in 2014-15.

“The Applause Festival is identified as a core promotional activity,” she said.

“Given Albury Central’s financial position, and the fact it has for some time been the beneficiary of annual increases in the (rate), it may be appropriate not to provide additional funding for the festival moving forward, rather request this activity be funded by the (rate).”