The NSW government has announced a new $51.5 million stimulus package for the entertainment, accommodation and tourism industries.
It will include a program where 200,000 vouchers worth $100 each will be made available for hotel stays in the Sydney CBD.
“It’s about getting people back in our hotels,” Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres said.
The vouchers will be allocated on a “first in, first served” basis, with the rollout set to begin in June.
There will also be $24 million in support funds for live music venues, and $5.5 million for the business events industry.
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the music money will help artists and entertainers who are currently on JobKeeper, a federal aid program that is set to end this month.
He said there were 5500 NSW musicians on the JobKeeper program as of December.
“This is a very, very good day for the music industry, not just in NSW, but nationally,” he said.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian, who wasn’t present at the press conference where the stimulus package was announced, said of the new vouchers: “This new program will be in addition to our other stimulus measures such as the ‘Dine and discover’ scheme.”
“(It) will provide a boost to accommodation providers in what is a traditionally very quiet period.”
The ‘Dine and discover’ scheme is a different voucher program where NSW residents can get $50 to spend on food and $50 on entertainment.
The government expects to expand the hotel voucher program after the initial run of 200,000, and the expansion would cover all of greater Sydney, Mr Ayres said.
The live music support package will only cover venues, rather than artists. The money will be administered through a partnership between Create NSW and the office of the 24-hour economy commissioner, a newly appointed ambassador for night-time culture and business.
There will also be $2 million in funds for tourism marketing.