With overnight travel restrictions being lifted Monday, Nationals Gippsland East MP Tim Bull is seeking the re-opening of the Golden Tag recreational fishing incentive to bring visitors back to the East Gippsland region.
Mr Bull proposed the initiative to reinvigorate post-fire tourism and worked with Government on its implementation, which saw several hundred tagged fish released into waterways. Lucky anglers that catch one of the tagged fish receive $2,000.
“East Gippsland lost its tourist season after the fires ran right through January and this was one way government could provide an incentive to get people back to the area,” said Mr Bull.
“A number of fish were caught pre-COVID, but with travel restrictions in place, it was suspended by Fisheries Victoria, which was completely understandable in the circumstances.
“However, now fishing is permitted and travel restrictions are being lifted from June 1, we need to get it open again.
“There will be a lot of people keen to get away and enjoy the outdoors after being housebound and I would argue East Gippsland needs them more than any other area.
“We have been on the receiving end of three years of drought, then the fires and now COVID and the business and tourism sector is struggling. Having this initiative restored will hopefully get those anglers who are weighing up options, to come our way.
“I will be contacting both the Minister and Fisheries Victoria office seeking its recommencement as soon as possible,” he said.
Caption: Local MP Tim Bull, wants the Golden Tag incentive re opened to encourage visitors back to the East Gippsland Region