New Bermuda Tourism Board announced
Tourism Minister Wayne Furbert has announced the formation of the Bermuda Tourism Board, a statutory body.
The development is in keeping with a recommendation by the current Tourism Board which has agreed to resign, said the Minister.
“With the recommendation, came a new Board structure. Because of this, they all agreed to resign to allow the process to take place,” Mr Furbert said.
“They all still remain committed to assist wherever needed. For continuity some of the members will serve under the new structure.”
While the legislation creating the Bermuda Tourism Board will be tabled in the next Parliamentary session, Minister Furbert said it will start working effective April 1.
The Board will serve for an as yet unspecified number of years, but more than one. Its chairman,and eight of the members, will be appointed by the Minister. Five members will be appointed by the Bermuda Hotel Association. The other members will be the President of the Bermuda Industrial Union, the Executive Officer of the Chamber of Commerce and, in an ex-officio capacity, the Director of Tourism and Global Operations, the Airport General Manager and the CEO of the Bermuda Hotel Association.
Mr Furbert said at a press conference announcing the new Board today that while it will be autonomous, it differs in a number of aspects from the Tourism Authourity concept advanced by the One Bermuda Alliance.
“One key difference is that they had talked about that the Governor shall appoint the members,” he said. “They had talked about the members pledging allegiance — I don't know to who, but I had the vision of them running around a campfire pledging allegiance to somebody.”
He added that the OBA wanted their Tourism Authority to be funded by the hospitality industry. But “our idea is that the business is not healthy enough for the full implementation of funding by hospitality and the Government must get involved”.
The Minister agreed that he had promoted a Tourism Authourity when he was in the Opposition and the new Tourism Board is precisely what he meant, he said.
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