Mount Isa City Council Mayor Joyce McCulloch has added her voice of concern to news Mount Isa Rodeo is making its chief executive a fly in fly out role.
Rodeo President Darren Campi said general manager Natalie Flecker would move into a CEO role based in Brisbane from the new year but would spend “a considerable amount of time” working in the Mount Isa office.
“Natalie will be continuing to grow the event and maintaining her stakeholder involvement, whether they are based in Mount Isa, Brisbane or other locations,” Mr Campi said.
Ms Flecker said she would begin the recruitment process in the second quarter of 2019 for a Mount Isa-based manager to manage the expanded operational needs.
“The event’s operations will continue from the rodeo office at 19 Marian Street, alongside our Isa Rodeo Hall of Fame,” Ms Flecker said.
“I will be back in Mount Isa regularly and very much part of our local community.”
But not everyone is happy with former councillor Kim Coghlan calling the decision “disgraceful” while Cr McCulloch said Mount Isa City Council was disappointed the newly created position would take the lead role of Rodeo out of the community.
“Council have always been proud supporters of the Rodeo, and we understand it has the potential to continue to grow and increase and attract visitors, but we believe jobs should remain local”, Cr McCulloch said.
“The current manager does an outstanding job of promoting and growing the city’s premier event, but this Council would rather see its key players support and encourage the growth of the region as well as the rodeo, and remain based in Mount Isa.
“Without Mount Isa, there is no Mount Isa Rodeo, and if our people can’t stay in the region, then how do we expect others to do the same?”
“The growth we have achieved has brought with it new pressures to increase visitors and sponsorship and to work with an increased number of key stakeholders,” he said. “This will best be achieved with these changes, while we will continue to have a strong office base in Mount Isa, working closely with our local community and our extremely important locally-based sponsors.”
“We are absolutely committed to achieving our vision of making the Isa Rodeo one of the most spectacular rodeos in the world and to working with our key stakeholders, including our tourism partners to increasing our visitors from around Australia and overseas.”
Mr Campi also confirmed this year would continue with the four-day rodeo format.
“It worked well (in 2018) and fits with Tourism and Events Queensland’s charter to grow the event’s offering and visitor numbers,” he said. “As part of our preparations for our 60th year event in 2019, we are also currently working on locking in another exciting line-up for Rodeo Rock.”
READ ALSO: Mount Isa Rodeo is big business