Last week NOTO was able to participate in the Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) Conference where we were part of TIAO’s tourism delegation with our colleagues from other sector organizations. TIAO had arranged meetings with seven Ministers for the delegation. During those meetings we brought forward several key asks, we were received well by each Minister and their staff and are optimistic that our Provincial Government will continue to help remove barriers to the tourism industry’s recovery and growth.
I also attended the Recreational Boating Advisory Council meeting with Transport Canada. They will be looking posting a new proposal regarding the use of rental boat safety checklists again in the next few months so we will ensure that tourism operators will be informed as soon as there are opportunities to make comments. We have been able to avoid the elimination of these checklists as a form of proof of competency in the recent past and we will need to be vigilant if we wish to do this again.
Another key take away from this meeting is the need for all of us to encourage life jacket wear. You will note that NOTO will be sharing messages of this nature on our website on both the industry and consumer sides of our site. I would like to hear from operators about any challenges you have in sharing these messages and what we can do to help encourage your guests to wear their PFDs. It would help us if we could understand the opposition if any you hear from guests and staff.
In the coming days and weeks we will be engaging MNRF regarding deer, bear, land use permits and moose to continue to press for change that will support a strong resource-based tourism sector. We have included in this newsletter a brief survey regarding non-resident deer hunting. Please take a few minutes and share with us your thoughts. This survey will help us in our discussions with MNRF.
To all of our non-member readers. I hope that you have enjoyed receiving our regular updates and that you have good understanding of the work that NOTO does on behalf of outdoor tourism businesses. We have accomplished a great deal during the pandemic together. With your engagement in surveys, webinars, and through discussions, we were able to advocate for funding programs, extensions, waiving of fees, allowing tourism businesses to be open, borders to be open and more.
We know that this year will be a critical first full season in the recovery phase for many in our sector, we also know that NOTO will need to be here to help ensure Government continues to support the sector through to recovery and growth. We hope that you will support our efforts through membership and continued engagement.
As you will note in the issue, we will no longer be sending our newsletter to non-members bi-weekly. We want you to continue to hear about the work that we are doing on behalf of the industry so we will move forward with non-members on a reduced communication plan.
I think you can agree that we are stronger together. I encourage you to review our membership rates and benefits and join NOTO this year. In addition to offering the ability to make your payment online, we can also set up payment plans if this suits your needs.