Lismore City Councillors Glenys Ritchie and Ray Houston promoting the Lismore Come to the Heart brand ahead of North Coast National.
Lismore City Councillors Glenys Ritchie and Ray Houston promoting the Lismore Come to the Heart brand ahead of North Coast National. Cathy Adams

Lismore campaign examined

THE success of Lismore's $300,000 per annum marketing and events promotion program, Come to the Heart, is being independently reviewed by Southern Cross University.

The project has been operating for two-and-a-half years and is responsible for city-wide marketing for events, promotion of CBD businesses, and improving the amenity and attractions of the CBD.

A key function is its promotional support for major Lismore events including the North Coast National, the Lismore Lantern Parade, and the Sports and Classic Cars Show, which bring several hundred people into Lismore across the year.

The review of the project, run by Southern Cross Business School, includes a survey of the Lismore business community to gauge the perception and support of Lismore's businesses for the initiative.

Its findings are expected to be released early next year.

Lismore city centre manager Katie O'Rourke said on a day to day basis Come to the Heart focused on maintaining a vibrant Lismore CBD throughout the year and ensuring amenities were up to scratch.

"We've also been able to provide funding support for a lot of different events and activities that we don't necessarily manage but provide extra support for so they can do advertising and promotions," Ms O'Rourke said.

Ms O'Rourke said she was looking forward to the results of the audit.

"It's really exciting - we can get some great information back from SCU to plan for the future of Lismore and the program, and its great to have both the community and businesses perspective."

Lismore City Council is expected to vote next month on whether to support a proposal to introduce a Special Rate Variation of $6 per year to resident ratepayers.

Applied across 17,000 residential ratepayers the increase would boost Come to the Heart's budget by $100,000.

A council workshop tomorrow night (Wednesday) will brief councillors on the proposal.



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