$93.7 Million Budget For Tourism & Transport

March 3, 2013

The Ministry of Tourism Development and Transport’s budget for the fiscal year 2013/14 has decreased by 3% from $96.3 million to $93.7 million, Minister Shawn Crockwell said.

The Ministry’s anticipated Government revenue is projected to increase by 3% from $51.7 million to $53.4 million, the Minister said – with the increase driven by revenue from increases in multi-day transportation passes and motor vehicle licenses.

Minster Crockwell said, “Motor vehicle licencing fees are being increased and the licencing fees for senior owning vehicles in Class E, F, G & H will be reinstated. Some will of course argue that the reinstatement is discriminatory and for some this decision is a bit distressing but this decision was not taken lightly.

“A statistical analysis on the number of car registered by senior in the various Classes between the period of 2008 and 2013 provides evidence that this senior benefit and privilege is being abused, particularly the larger classes of motor cars. This finding was also documented in a recently completed audit that recommended TCD management to push for legislative changes so that the seniors’ vehicle licence exemption is restricted to the lower vehicle classes.”

The Department of Tourism budget has been reduced by 5% from $28.7 million to $27.2 million, while the Department of Public Transportation allocation has increased by 7% to $20.9 million for the next fiscal year.

“This additional funding is provided to ensure the required maintenance schedules are maintained with the resulting improved reliability of service,” said Minister Crockwell.

“$3 million of capital funding has been allocated for the purchase of 10 new buses and it is anticipated that the buses will be delivered between July and August.”

The Department of Marine & Ports allocation has been reduced by 3% to $18.5 million, the Department of Airport Operation has had their budget reduced by 8% to $19.7 million and TCD’s budget is $6.3 million – approximately a 5% reduction.

“There has been great pressure on the Department of Marine & Ports to provide additional service to the East End during the busy cruise ship season,” said Minister Crockwell.

“It is planned to provide such service this year, using a dedicated, large high-speed catamaran ferry, chartered from overseas. This 400 passenger ferry lift between Dockyard and St. Georges will allow the local ferry fleet to focus on the Dockyard to Hamilton service, as well as the morning and evening commuter service.”

Minister Crockwell’s full statement follows below:

Good afternoon, I am pleased to provide highlights of The Ministry of Tourism Development and Transport’s budget for the fiscal year 2013/14.

You will note the operational budget has been decreased by 3% from $96.3 million in the current 2012/13 fiscal year to $93.7 million for the fiscal year 2013/14.

The Ministry’s anticipated Government revenue is projected to increase by 3% from $51.7 million in the current 2012/13 fiscal year to $53.4 million in the next fiscal. That increase is largely driven by revenue from increases in multi-day transportation passes and motor vehicle licenses.

The multiday transportation passes that are used on both public buses and ferries were last increased in 2004 while the cost of providing these services has increased over the years therefore the increases will help to offset the cost of providing these services.

Motor vehicle licencing fees are being increased and the licencing fees for senior owning vehicles in Class E, F, G & H will be reinstated. Some will of course argue that the reinstatement is discriminatory and for some this decision is a bit distressing but this decision was not taken lightly.

A statistical analysis on the number of car registered by senior in the various Classes between the period of 2008 and 2013 provides evidence that this senior benefit and privilege is being abused, particularly the larger classes of motor cars. This finding was also documented in a recently completed audit that recommended TCD management to push for legislative changes so that the seniors’ vehicle licence exemption is restricted to the lower vehicle classes.

With regards to the individual department programs, The Department of Tourism budget has been reduced by 5% from $28.7 million in the current 2012/13 fiscal year to $27.2 million for the next fiscal year 2013/14. The Department of Tourism and the Tourism Board have and continue to work closely with our on Island and overseas partners to ensure Bermuda gets the best value and return on investments for our planned Sales and Marketing initiatives, product offering and events scheduled for the next fiscal year.

The establishment of a Tourism Authority is a high priority for our Ministry and we will hold a Product Development Conference in order to seek initiatives and ideas from the public, and will identify the most attractive and sustainable concepts. You will certainly be hearing more about this event in the very near future. The operations of the Government Golf Courses are within the remit of our Ministry and will receive a grant of $850 thousand.

In Cruise Tourism the Ministry is preparing for the introduction of Norwegian Cruise Line 4,000 passenger ship Norwegian Breakaway, which will have her inaugural cruise to Bermuda in mid-May. This will be the largest cruise ship to visit Bermuda, and will require coordinated and efficient transportation services including buses, ferries, taxis and mini-buses to transport our many visitors.

The Department of Public Transportation allocation has increased by 7% to $20.9 million for the next fiscal year. This additional funding is provided to ensure the required maintenance schedules are maintained with the resulting improved reliability of service.

$3 million of capital funding has been allocated for the purchase of 10 new buses and it is anticipated that the buses will be delivered between July and August. The last purchase of buses took place in 2009 when fifteen (15) were secured. These additional buses will provide increased lift during the peak period of the season.

The Department of Marine & Ports allocation has been reduced by 3% to an allocation of $18.5 million for the next fiscal year. The Department of Marine & Ports will seek to improve efficiencies in all areas of its operations to reduce the cost of providing services and create the capacity to do more with the current resources.

There has been great pressure on the Department of Marine & Ports to provide additional service to the East End during the busy cruise ship season. It is planned to provide such service this year, using a dedicated, large high-speed catamaran ferry, chartered from overseas. This 400 passenger ferry lift between Dockyard and St. Georges will allow the local ferry fleet to focus on the Dockyard to Hamilton service, as well as the morning and evening commuter service.

Despite having their budget reduced by 8% to an allocation of $19.7 million for the next fiscal year, The Department of Airport Operation has successfully safeguarded its scheduled air services for 2013 by maintaining roughly the same amount of total available seats as the previous year despite mounting financial pressures on airlines to reduce their number of flights. The travelling public will have another choice of travel to and from New York as Delta Airlines will offer daily direct service between La Guardia and Bermuda. This service will commence on 8th April, 2013. The Department will continue with the Visual Slope Segment Penetration (VSSP) remedial project and $2.3 million of Capital funding has been allocated for the completion of this project.

The Transport Control Department’s budget allocation for the next fiscal is $6.3 million which is approximately a 5% reduction when compared to the current fiscal year. However, this is not reflective of our commitment to road safety. We are ever committed to educating and protecting road users with a view to decreasing road accidents.

In 2013 we have already had 5 road fatalities and this is very disheartening. The Road Safety Council will work very closely with the Bermuda Police Service to increase road safety awareness messages and to implement a series of initiatives that our technical officers are currently developing.

The Transport Control Department continues to be encouraged by results of the Project Ride Programme. In 2012 the Programme had 563 participants with a 92% completion and pass rate.

TCD will also continue to work very closely with the Taxi and Minibus operators to modernize and improve the services of these very important industries.

Obviously, there is so much more to share about the Ministry of Tourism Development and Transport’s budget for 2013/14 however this sums up our overview for today.

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Comments (25)

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  1. Thief says:

    Why are we getting a breakdown? Just more consultants probably and the OBA made an election promise about using less consultants. The PLP proved that we don’t need breakdowns.

    • Alicia says:

      I disagree. After all the allegations of corruption and mismanagement by the Plp, I think it’s wise for transparency to provide the breakdown of how public funds are intended to be used.

  2. BDAboy says:

    ” The PLP proved that we don’t need breakdowns.”

    Not true. The PLP didn’t provide any transparency because they were taking you blind.

  3. knowthyself says:

    Hmmm, Tourism. Sounds familiar!!!

    Only time will tell dear boys and girls.

  4. Horse says:

    Who cares at least they r trying to spend less money , anything gotta b Bette than Wayne Furbert spending 13 million with fuseideas marketing company. That basically just duplicated the state of maynes same plan that they payed 3million for.

  5. Argosy says:

    How is the airport going to operate with 8% less?

    Close it on the weekends??

    • Inside Track says:

      No, we can take it out of your pocket.

  6. Just us says:

    Take that 93 million and get the top 10 music artist in the world to perform here with Bermuda’s local artist doing the opening acts. This will somewhat give a boost to the economy. That in itself will get all their followers, paparazzi and other news agencies to look up where Bermuda is located to see who can afford to come here.
    To get a good demonstration of this, start with the baddest artist on the east coast of the U.S.A.

    • .am says:

      Because that worked out SO well for the 2008 music festival.

      • Just us says:

        I said top 10 present artist, not the top 10 from 50 years ago like the previously boring shows…

    • Kettle says:

      Dumbest thing I have ever heard.

  7. missed oppotunity says:

    DOT missed a big opportunity for marketing in the UK during Bradford’s run to Wembley. Should have done a “Nahki Wells’ Bermuda” feature/ad and run it before and after the games, while the focus of england was on him and his team… Should still do it but will have missed some of the focus.

  8. street wise says:

    The first step to a creating a fresh new tourism marketing plan is to ask our visitors WHY they come here, many over and over and over again. And it is not because “Bermuda is More!” I have asked many visitors that question… Why do you come here?… what do you like about Bermuda that brings you back as a repeat visitor? They come here because Bermuda is close, clean, friendly, safe, incredibly beautiful (even if most locals don’t see it), and different… our pink beaches and turquoise waters, we are more sophisticated than many other Islands to the south, and believe it or not, they like that it is relatively quiet here. Most are not looking for fast night life, but many would pay to see authentic local entertainment. Most would welcome gaming. And most don’t even realize that we have US Customs Pre-clearance at the airport, and perhaps that should be stressed more in our advertising, as this is very convenient for them

    Over 85% of our visitors come from the Gateway cities of the US Atlantic Northeast, so 85% of our advertising should be concentrated in that area. Forget about pink buses and taxis, and the Boston Red Sox! I was not impressed at all with Fuseideas’ last ad campaign, it was not creative nor on target. This agency was chosen by the plp, so why would the OBA use the same company. Kickbacks? Our kids jumping off the rocks produced a better commercial for the Island – for free. If the DoT and/or the supposed Tourism Authority would just concentrate on the basics, we may be able to attract more visitors to our beautiful Island. Oh, by the way, our higher prices are often perceived as ‘prestigious,’ in that visitors’ friends may comment, “How can you afford to come to Bermuda?” which implies that they have more money.

    So that’s my 2 cents worth… For now. Comments would be appreciated.

    • I love Bermuda
      because It is a safe place to come to and the people are very nice my first trip there I got lost taking the bus and a young lady went out of her way to make sure that I got to were I was going. The beaches are the best you will ever see and I have seen a lot. But the cost of food and the room are way to much so my next trip will be on the cruse ship.And then you lose out on the money because I will eat and sleep on the ship and that’s sad because your motels are very nice
      hope to see you soon

    • Your joking says:

      And someone finally understands….you should have the job.

  9. Richard says:

    Really shawn Crockwell in charge of 93 million

    • M.P. MOUNTBATTEN JP says:

      Don’t worry Richard , the money will be kept in a safe , in the Supreme Court , in the Office of the Chief Justice .

    • .am says:

      How is that any worse than leaving Paula Cox in charge?

  10. Dr. Brown says:

    Ok, where is the credibility and oversight in allowing Mr. Crockell to be in charge of $93.7 million and such a critical ministry that will make or break this island going forward. Just off of observation he is not a finisher and right now we need people to be working hard for US the people.

    • Your joking says:

      There will be checks and balances put in place and transparency….unlike what you saw with the PLP….if not they get voted out…next election

  11. Your joking says:

    And please can we make sure the one thing we have…beautiful beaches…are kept clean and cleared of seaweed and trash every day….Under the previous Government it was atrocious…..always claiming the tractor was broken..

    • Grubster says:

      Yes. Even Horseshoe bay is not cleaned every day in the summer and as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world it looks a mess covered in seaweed.

  12. Bobmarlin says:

    All the way OBA!

  13. Grubster says:

    When the Queen came in 2009, I had English friends sending me newspaper articles from travel writers being really positive about Bermuda. Need the same kind of positive travel writer spin fro US and Canadian journalists