Magnetic Island North Queensland
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February 12th 2012
President "corrects" comments on TOBMI

Following is a letter from Tourism Magnetic Operators & Businesses Magnetic Island President, Lindsay Simpson, correcting some recent comments about TOBMI made at the Sustainable Tourism Destination workshop recently.

Dear Editor,

I would like to correct some misinformation about TOBMI (Tourism Operators & Businesses Magnetic Island) that was given by a member of the community at a recent workshop on the island on the future of Magnetic Island as a Sustainable Tourism Destination conducted by Sealink and JCU.

TOBMI has a membership of 43 and was incorporated in November 2009. It has a small but highly committed group of people who have won considerable achievements that should be of great benefit to island businesses engaged in tourism. Anyone who would like to join is most welcome as the more voices the better.

To list a few of our achievements:

Rick Braley on the committee has been awarded a $27,000 grant on behalf of TOBMI to build at least two snorkel trails either in Jeffreys, Arthur or Nelly Bay. Given that there is no marine signage on the island, this will provide an excellent opportunity for tourists and others to understand more about our marine environment.

TOBMI has worked hard to achieve a shared membership with TEL, the funding body for tourism in the region as the RTO Ė Regional Tourism Organisation. This essentially means that TOBMI members can now display their brochures at the Visitor Information Centres (VICS) on the Bruce Highway entering Townsville from the south and the brand new VICS in the city mall. This also means TOBMI has representation on the TEL Strategic Advisory Committee for Tourism, an important group of stakeholders. It is this body that recommends spending on marketing for the region among other important issues.

TOBMI is about to launch its own website which will be linked to Tourism Queensland and TELís websites increasing the tourism traffic to the island. This was following a successful grant from the Townsville City Council. The website will be the official tourism website for the island as TOBMI is the LTO (Local Tourism Organisation) for Tourism Queensland. Apart from showcasing membersí products, the website will also be a portal for multimedia stories from the community eg a profile on one of our young kite surfers and other interesting tales. It will also feature our marine, maritime, heritage and history, flora and fauna.

TOBMI has formed a group called the Strategic Advisory Group comprising key stakeholders on the island such as GBRMPA; Parks & Wildlife; TEL; Solar Cities; NQ Dry Tropics and community members to advise on how best to present and preserve our island as a sustainable place for the future.

TOBMI volunteers present memberís businesses at regular TCC Expos on The Strand with up to 3000 visitors each time.

These are only a few of the benefits our committee has been working on since the groupís inception. Membership is only $120 pa for small businesses, another factual error given at the workshop. The $500 pa mentioned is for our corporate sponsorship, not individual membership and we have a growing number of corporate sponsors. If we are to have a growing and vital tourism sector on the island we need unity.

It is disappointing that facts arenít checked before vocalising opinions. It is also a shame that some people see fit to denigrate achievements on the island for whatever reasons. As Chair of TOBMI I feel a responsibility, for the record, to correct this. Any membership enquiries please email us Weíd really welcome positive supporters.

Lindsay Simpson
Tourism Operators Businesses Magnetic Island.

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Readers comments
Tonia In reply to The ongoing price of Nelly Bay Harbour
It's 14 years since I last visited Maggy. I am shocked by Nelly Bay and saddened. It is insensitive, ugly and juxtaposed to the essence of Maggy. I embrace progress in general, but this is poorly conceived and executed. Shame.
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