20 Oct 2023

Extra $500,000 funding boost for significantly impacted flood affected Murray River operators


Mid Murray River tourism operators significantly impacted by the once-in-a-century flooding event will receive additional assistance, including infrastructure, marketing, events, and tourism support. 

The additional $500,000 funding will deliver on the State Government’s commitment announced in February to provide recovery assistance to significantly impacted businesses along the low-lying 
regions of the Murray River. 

Funding streams include grants to assist tourism businesses to return to full operations, staff retraining, marketing activities, infrastructure and funding for events.

Eligible businesses will include those located primarily in the Mid Murray Council region and neighbouring areas that were impacted. Due to the ongoing impacts of the flooding event, operators in these areas had limited opportunity to welcome back visitors or participate in other recovery activities such as the River Revival Voucher scheme. 

The $500,000 funding will be distributed via four funding streams, each designed to grow tourism opportunities and help drive visitation and expenditure in the region. The South Australian Tourism Commission has been working with the Mid Murray Council to ensure the funding is targeted, timely and set to benefit the region. The funding includes:

  • $150,000 to be shared among the five councils impacted by the flood to support new and emerging events, with additional funds provided to the Mid Murray Council to support tourism recovery efforts.
  • $300,000 to be allocated to support businesses significantly impacted by the floods, such as caravan parks, in the region, with grants of up to $50,000 available through the new Mid Murray River Tourism Business Support Program.
  • $50,000 will be allocated to the South Australian Tourism Commission for dedicated marketing support for impacted tourism businesses.

Prior to the 2022-23 flooding event, tourism in the Riverland and Murray River, Lakes & Coorong regions was worth a combined $436 million. In the year to June 2023, it is now worth a combined $562 million.

The $500,000 Mid-Murray recovery funding is part of the $4.6 million river recovery plan, which also includes the ‘Rise Up for our River’ marketing campaign and the River Revival Voucher program.

The River Revival Voucher program has so far injected more than $5 million into Riverland and Murray River, Lakes, and Coorong regions, with the economic impact continuing to grow as travel for the second voucher round continues until 30 November 2023. 

Businesses are able to apply for the grants here

Applications will open from 9am ACST Wednesday 25 October 2023 until 5pm ACST Friday 24 November 2023. 

South Australian Tourism Commission chief executive, Emma Terry said that it has always been wanted to provide targeted and timely support, and I want to thank the Mid Murray Council for helping the SATC design this package.

"The funding is designed to give eligible tourism businesses a step closer to re-opening or recovery, 
and more broadly, drive a greater range of products in the region," Ms Terry said.

"It is a credit to Mayor Simone Bailey and the Mid Murray Council for wanting to share some of the 
funding with neighbouring councils, recognising they too were significantly impacted by the floods."

Mid Murray Council mayor, Simone Bailey said this $500,000 funding injection into the region will be vital for businesses that have been most severely impacted by the flood along the river corridor, and further demonstrates the strong partnership between Council and the State Government to continue to support the recovery of the region. 

"Together, we're working tirelessly to bring our region back to its vibrant best," Ms Bailey said.

"The funding will assist businesses as they rebuild, and look to thrive once again, and the support, spanning infrastructure, marketing, events, and staff training, will help our region come back stronger. 

"Supporting the region’s recovery has been, and continues to be, council’s top priority. With an extra $500,000 in funding, tourism operators in the Mid Murray region will be able to rebuild and welcome visitors back, which is vital for the recovery and prosperity of the region. 

"My council extends our heartfelt gratitude to Minister Bettison, the SATC and State Government for 
their unwavering support of the region and the Mid Murray community."