Echuca Moama Tourism reported a net loss of $172,217 for the past financial year at its annual general meeting on Wednesday night.
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The figures were contained in the 2023 Annual General Report distributed at the meeting.
EMT generated revenue of $880,494 in the financial year ending June 30, 2023.
That included operating grants of $442,362, membership subscriptions totalling $154,392 and sales revenue of $130,358.
The expenses column was as follows:
- $442,809 for marketing and customer services;
- $457,124 for administration;
- $145,228 for other expenses;
- $7550 for depreciation and amortisation expenses.
The six-figure loss is the second in as many years following a reported loss of $104,686 for the financial year ending June 30, 2022.
On the asset front, EMT has total assets of $770,953, down more than $180,000 from 12 months earlier.
EMT’s current liabilities were slightly lower than 12 months previously, $324,087 compared to $328,214 in the financial year ending 2022.
That has resulted in net assets of $446,864, including $200,801 of reserves and $246,063 of retained profits.
That figure is down from $619,081 reported at the financial year ending 2022.
More details emerged about the controversial decision to close the Echuca-Moama Visitor Information Centre.
The financials of the centre were shared in full with members.
The visitor information centre ran at a net loss of $31,715 for the financial year ending June 30, 2023.
Income totalled $420,242, including $269,554 from Campaspe Shire Council and $39,970 from Murray River Council.
Sales tallied $52,340, commissions accounted for $44,205 and rent received was $12,673.
Expenditure totalled $451,957, of which more than $315,000 went to salaries or wages.
EMT said that 2.43 per cent of all domestic travellers to Echuca-Moama used the now-closed centre from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023.
Across the 12-month period, the centre had 41,368 in-person visits, 8219 inquiries via phone, 1415 via email and 298,381 online.
The centre was closed from October 17 to November 22 last year due to the Echuca-Moama floods.
EMT reported 154 accommodation bookings were made by face-to-face visitors at the centre, totalling $60,594, a figure which represented 43 per cent of online booking value and 69 per cent of phone booking value.
Chairman Dean Oberin, in his report, delivered a recap of the timeline of the service level agreements (SLA) between EMT and the two councils.
“In July 2022, EMT, Campaspe Shire Council (CSC) and Murray River Council (MRC) commenced the development of an interim single SLA with mutually agreed service deliverables for FY23,” he said.
“With the support of council observers, the chair and CEO worked towards an interim one-year SLA with each local council in December 2022, with funding secured for EMT to provide services for accredited visitor services and destination marketing services until June 30, 2023.
“On December 1, 2022, MRC confirmed grant funding to EMT for the supply of service for visitor services, and destination marketing services to June 30, 2023.
“In April 2023, MRC confirmed a contribution to EMT for FY24 for accredited visitor services and destination marketing services.
“After the end of the financial year, in August 2023, MRC advised no allocation to EMT at this time for the supply of destination marketing services after August 31, 2023.
“EMT and MRC continue to work together on the supply of destination marketing services through EMT and have a planning workshop scheduled on December 12, 2023.
“On December 15, 2022, CSC confirmed grant funding to EMT for the supply of service for visitor services, and destination marketing services to June 30, 2023 and advised that CSC’s further investment in tourism will be reviewed as part of the proposed tourism strategy.
“In April 2023, CSC confirmed a funding contribution to EMT for FY24 for accredited visitor services in July and August 2023.
“After the end of the financial year, in July 2023, CSC advised no further funding contribution to EMT for the supply of visitor services after August 31, 2023.
“In September 2023, CSC advised no funding contribution to EMT at this time for the supply of destination marketing services.
“EMT and CSC continue to work together on the supply of the destination marketing services through EMT and are next meeting in November 2023 to continue conversations.”
Mr Oberin stepped down as chairman at the annual general meeting and was replaced in the role by Moama Bowling Club sales and marketing manager George Santos.
Mr Santos has been joined on the executive by vice-chairman Jason Clymo, secretary Eleisha Catalano and treasurer Ken Collier.
A non-for-profit organisation, EMT had 270 members for the year ending June 30, 2023.
Of these members, 155 members (57.4 per cent) renewed their memberships for the new membership year, 87 (32.2 per cent) have had lapsed memberships and 28 members (10.4 per cent) cancelled their membership, predominantly due to the closure of the visitor information centre.