The merit of Indigo Council taking over the Rutherglen Visitor Information Centre has been hotly contested by councillors.
Staff had recommended that in adapting the Rutherglen Destination Management Report 2020, that council should take over operation of the centre, establish an operational committee, and consider options for the building the VIC works out of.
But Cr Bernard Gaffney wanted to strike out those conditions - while still assessing the future of Destination Rutherglen - and received enough support to do so.
"The Beechworth VIC cost to council is $324,000, with Rutherglen VIC the cost to council is $147,000," he said.
"The income to the Beechworth VIC ... is $41,900 yet income at Rutherglen is $165,000.
"It's clear which is the more efficient."
He also took issue with the proposed sale of wine at the VIC by council during the implementation period of a new committee.
"Does that mean Indigo Shire wants to go into competition with Dan Murphy's and BWS?" he asked.
Cr James Trenery said the recommendation from staff was "unbelievable" and their report read more like a "sales document".
"Why on Earth would we buy a VIC, and spend huge amount of money, to come up with a marketing plan?" he said.
The report identified the current destination management structure is "complicated, inefficient and not meeting industry and business needs" and Cr Shepheard agreed the set-up was "convoluted".
Cr Diane Shepheard queried how maintaining the status quo would improve lower-than-average overnight spend, or engage the 83 per cent of businesses not linked in with Destination Rutherglen, which were two arguments for the VIC changes.
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"I want to be able to see if we change this system, we are going to get more overnight stays in Rutherglen and we're going to get more businesses and community engaged around tourism," she said.
Cr Larry Goldsworthy joined Cr Shepheard and Mayor Jenny O'Connor in supporting the staff's recommendation, but they were outvoted.
"We've had strong advocacy from both sides of the fence," he said.