Council to consider funding options for plowing match

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The International Plowing Match is huge, as evidenced by this photograph from the 2009 event in Earleton, Ont.

CORNWALL, Ontario - City council may have to begin socking away some money next year as it prepares a large sum of cash for a huge agriculture event taking place in 2015.

Council agreed earlier this year to consider providing $100,000 in cash and in-kind services to the International Plowing Match - a hugely popular event among farmers and those in the agriculture industry.

Councillors may want to consider putting some money aside in next year's budget to account for a funding commitment being requested by plowing match officials, says a report to be dicussed Monday night at city hall.

"There will not be any financial implications for the City of Cornwall for 2013, however council may wish to contribute a loan portion in 2014, with the balance of funds to be contributed in the year of the event, being 2015," said economic development manager Mark Boileau in his report.

In addition to the plowing match, the 2015 Ontario Plowman's Association conference will be taking place in Cornwall in March of that year, with as many as 400 delegates expected to attend.

The total budget for the plowing match, the largest event of its kind in North America, is expected to be approximately $2.5 million, and the economic spinoffs estimated at $20 million.The plowing match will take place in Finch.

In the case of the 2011 Prescott Russell plowing match, there were 72,000 visitors, and a legacy fund of $225,000 was created, which was donated back to various charities and community organizations.

For the 2015 SDG event, the funds will be provided to the three area hospitals. The primary accommodation hub for the event wis expected to be Cornwall, in addition to the event grounds themselves.

Space for some 2,000 trailers has been set aside on the plowing match grounds.

Geographic location: Ontario

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