Falls Festival Tasmanian Leg Could Be Scrapped

The Marion Bay leg of the Falls Festival may not go ahead next summer if it can’t secure funding from the Tasmanian governement.According to The Age and Hobart’s The Mercury, organisers have asked the cash-strapped state government for $350,000 to ensure the survival of the festival, which was headlined by Fleet Foxes and the Arctic Monkeys over the weekend.

Organiser Simon Daly said last year’s event had cost $4.2 million to run and made a profit of just $50,000.

“If we don’t get the funding, I think it would be very difficult to stage the Falls Festival in Tasmania in 2012,” he told the Mercury.

Mr Daly said with running costs rising each year, he fears not being able to deliver the world-class festival patrons have come to expect.

“We’re an organisation that doesn’t always ask (for funding), but … it does need that support,” he said.

“This is a great opportunity for the Tasmanian Government not only to ensure the longevity of the festival, but to work with us to ensure that ticket prices (remain low).”

Mr Daly said the government had contributed just $900,000 to the festival over its nine years at Marion Bay, despite the event generating $150 million to the state’s economy. Around half of the 16,000 people from this year’s festival came from interstate.

Tasmanian tourism minister Scott Bacon said the government had spent $287,000 on facilities at the festival site.

“We’ve committed with the Falls organisers to working through Events Tasmania to see if there’s any efficiencies or cost-savings that can be found to keep the Falls Festival in Tasmania,” he said.

“It’s important to remember this is a time of budget restraints in Tasmania.”

The Tasmanian Government slashed events funding by $1.5 million in last year’s state budget.

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