I have always been a strong support of the arts. When I was growing up in Yellowknife, taking part in performing arts and community theatre gave me the confidence and direction I needed to keep focused on academics and grow as an individual. Preforming on stage was a passion that led me to pursue a degree in fine arts, although I would eventually find that political science was my true calling.
Northern arts enrich our community and are vital in supporting Yellowknife and the NWT as an attractive destination for visitors who want to experience all the North has to offer. That’s why my plan will invest $1.3 of new funding to expand our tourism market and invest in Northern arts and culture.
The NWT has become one of the fastest growing tourism markets in North America. This gives our government a real opportunity for economic diversification and new potential for growth. I want to realize the potential of this growing market by investing in infrastructure to create new attractions for visitors and increased funding for arts and culture in the NWT. Our government can make the NWT a more attractive destination for tourists and a more vibrant place to call home for our residents by investing in arts, culture and conservation.
My plan will increase available funding for tourism infrastructure to $1 million, create a $100,000 Operator Insurance Assistance Fund and a $250,000 Community Museum Operating Grant. This invest will expand our tourism market, create jobs and give visitors to the NWT more to do on their journeys North and more opportunities to explore our unique culture an spectacular natural environment.
My plan offers something for both tourists and residents in increased support for Northern artists and arts organizations in the NWT. I will support new funding for artists, including core funding for arts organizations that promote and support the arts in our communities. I will also prioritize building a new standalone performing arts facility in Yellowknife that will support Northern, national and international performers and arts programs throughout the NWT.
It is time to invest in our tourism sector to create jobs and new growth for our economy. Our government can’t afford to waste this opportunity and my plan will make immediate investments in our tourism industry and our arts community.