Pollution and overcrowding have been identified as priorities for the millions of dollars to be put towards freedom camping in New Zealand, according to Rotorua's Mayor.
Mayor Steve Chadwick joined Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis as he announced an $8 million investment into freedom camping at the Rotorua i-Site this morning.
The funding will be for operating costs such as education and enforcement projects, ambassador programmes, and temporary facilities like showers and toilets.
It will not be available for capital costs and projects like permanent showers, toilets blocks and carparks, which come from the Tourism Infrastructure Fund.
Councils around the country will be able to apply for the funding on June 1 and will find out in early July how much they will get.
Davis said this would be made available for summer 2019/20 to deliver a better freedom camping system and encourage "responsible camping" across the country.
The announcement followed the $8m made available last summer for the industry which Davis said had been a success.
As he addressed those involved in tourism and conservation in Rotorua this morning, he said the large visitor growth showed neglect of destination management.
"The feedback we've received from councils and communities has exceeded all expectations, and it's great that we're able to do this again," Davis said.
"We want to build on the success of last summer. This means making sure we're targeting funding and facilities at the right locations, to minimise any potential impacts on communities and businesses."
Chadwick told the Rotorua Daily Post, "we're ready".
"This is part of the incremental change needed towards a better, more consistent system across the country and encouraging the concept of responsible camping," she said.
While she did not know yet what the application would entail, she said a "dispersal model" was needed in Rotorua.
She said the council would consult with the Lakes Community Board as well as the Holiday Park Association about where the money should go.
"So that [freedom campers] are not all overcrowding any one place ... We want to make sure they're well dispersed but also that they've got the right facilities," she said.
She said combating pollution was a priority and calls for cooking facilities for freedom campers had also been previously made.
"When you match ratepayer money with this funding, the money could be used innovatively ... A little can go a long way."
Rotorua Top 10 Holiday Park co-owner and Holiday Park NZ board member Jared Adams felt positive about the announcement and hoped the money would be used to monitor freedom camping areas.
"I do hope they spend a lot of the money on people checking the areas just to make sure campers are aware of what they can or can't do," he said.
His wife Jasmine said she felt listened to by Chadwick and said it was important those in the tourism industry continued to be part of the discussion on the allocations.