Message from the Minister and
Accountability Statement

Photograph -- Honourable Stanley B. HagenIt is a privilege to present the Ministry of Tourism, Sport and the Arts' 2007/08 – 2009/10 Service Plan. This plan outlines our strategy for advancing the social and economic benefits of three critical sectors of our economy: tourism, sport and the arts. It also outlines how the Ministry will continue supporting the Government's Five Great Goals.

I am honoured to work with the staff at the Ministry every day, and I thank each of them for what they do as members of the Public Service; without them, we would not meet the goals set out in this plan.

The Ministry will play an important role in the Pacific Leadership Agenda and its five key elements. We will contribute to the creation of vibrant, connected communities; the building of new relationships with First Nations; renewing our health care system through ActNow BC and the Conversation on Health; capitalizing on B.C.'s role as Canada's Pacific Gateway; and, improving our competitiveness and productivity.

Key to our success will be the launch and implementation of our cross ministry Tourism Action Plan, and leveraging the benefits of hosting the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. The Tourism Action Plan builds on the foundation laid by Budget 2006's $50 million injection to tourism and international economic development opportunities.

Our plan eliminates barriers to development by improving policies and coordinating processes with First Nations and local governments. We understand the need to foster new investment to ensure vibrant resort and adventure tourism sectors, both vital components for many rural communities.

To commemorate the 150th anniversary of the founding of the Crown colony of British Columbia, the Ministry launched BC2008. Together with communities, we will hold events and provide programs to honour our past, and celebrate our future throughout 2008. BC2008 provides opportunities for Aboriginal people to share their history in the development of British Columbia. BC2008 will bridge generations and cultures for British Columbians young and old. I invite everyone to participate!

Winning the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games opened new doors for our entire province. In particular, possibilities to enhance sport and sport tourism abounded. The world wants to come to British Columbia, and B.C. is set to host major sporting events including: the 2007 World Youth Soccer Championships, the 2008 North American Indigenous Games, the 2009 World Police and Fire Games, and the 2011 Western Canada Summer Games.

When most people think about the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games they do not necessarily recognize the opportunity the games present to showcase our arts, culture, and heritage to the world. We will continue using the momentum of the games to solidify our growing reputation as one of the world's premier destinations for arts, cultural and agri-tourism.

Over the next three years we will continue to foster the growth of B.C.'s creative economy. This includes our comprehensive look at options to support the development of new infrastructure in arts and culture. Our goal is to build a framework for policy and decision making that builds creative capacity and supports the sustainability of creative organizations in the province. The Ministry will also work to ensure that our film production industry — the third-largest in North America — remains as strong and competitive as ever.

We will provide increased guidance and continued support to the seven Crown corporations and agencies that are accountable to the government through the Ministry: Tourism BC, the Royal BC Museum Corporation, the BC Pavilion Corporation, the Vancouver Convention Centre Expansion Project, the Provincial Capital Commission, the British Columbia Arts Council, and the BC Games Society.

In the time of writing this service plan, the Vancouver Convention Centre Expansion Project was undertaking a full review and assessment of the impact of higher than expected construction costs on the project. Preliminary estimates of an updated project cost are in the range of $800 million depending upon the contract model selected.

The Ministry of Tourism, Sport and the Arts' 2007/08 – 2009/10 Service Plan was prepared under my direction in accordance with the Budget Transparency and Accountability Act. I am accountable for the basis on which the plan has been prepared. All material fiscal assumptions and policy decisions as of February 12, 2007 have been considered in preparing the plan and I am accountable for achieving the specific objectives in the plan.

Honourable Stanley B. Hagen
Minister of Tourism, Sport and the Arts

February 12, 2007

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