Coast tourism jobs cut

THE aftershock of Noosa's decision to walk out on the Sunshine Coast has hit the region's peak tourism body.

Sunshine Coast Destination Ltd will make nine employees redundant after the newly divorced Noosa Council decided it would no longer contribute its $500,000 to the organisation after June this year.

Local tourism organisation Tourism Noosa also cut $300,000 in marketing involvement with Sunshine Coast Destination - meaning the body was $800,000 short.

Yesterday the organisation's CEO Simon Ambrose told the Daily marketing activities and digital campaigns were not scaled back in the process.

"We will still have Noosa members and we will still represent them but those members may have to pay more," Mr Ambrose said.

"We are also very willing to continue discussions with Noosa Council and Tourism Noosa, as we believe that as the regional tourism organisation, SCDL is best placed to support and grow Noosa's tourism business."

He said the funding cuts came despite national and international visitor surveys showing the Sunshine Coast recorded some of the highest visitor growth figures in Queensland in the past year.

The body is supported financially by Queensland Government, as well as funding from Sunshine Coast Council, Gympie Council and membership fees.

Mr Ambrose said he announced the redundancies as early as possible to give staff the best opportunity to find alternative employment. They would all receive their full entitlements, career planning and counselling.

"It has been a very sad day to tell so many talented staff we will no longer be able to fund their positions," he said.

Noosa Mayor Noel Playford said his council had to make sure Noosa businesses' cash contribution - through the tourism levy - was spent on "clearly defined objectives" with Tourism Noosa.

"Now SCDL's CEO has cut back on bureaucracy, which was being funded by money from Noosa, they should be in a better position to partner with Tourism Noosa on joint regional marketing initiatives."

Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson said he was dismayed by Noosa and his thoughts were with the staff.

"Once again the regional voice is being fragmented by Noosa's decision to separate," he said.