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Hotels Association’s big funding win after Tasmanian election campaign

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One of the Tasmanian Liberals biggest backers in the state election campaign is set to have its funding more than tripled.

The fiercely pro-pokies Tasmanian Hospitality Association (THA) will receive $6.8 million over four years.

In the last term of government, the THA received about $2 million in the same period.

The THA and the Love Your Local group campaigned hard for the Liberals and against Labor's policy to remove poker machines from pubs and clubs.

The Liberals funding commitment to the THA was not detailed in the party's hospitality policy, which was released last month with scant detail.

In response to the questions from the ABC about the policy, a government spokesman confirmed the THA will receive $1.7 million a year over the next four years.

"[It] will allow the THA to ensure the industry can continue to meet demand and ensure that the visitor experience matches our reputation as a premium destination," they said.

The money includes $2.8 million to extend the Great Customer Experience, $3 million for Workforce Development, money for the Stop the Coward's Punch campaign and cash for sporting clubs, RSLs and clubs.

Independent Federal MP for Denison Andrew Wilkie said the funding boost was scandalous.

"Any reasonable person would say it is corruption, it may be lawful, but it is a deep corruption of governance and proper process," he said.

"This is basically the Liberals sending a big fat thankyou cheque to the poker machine industry, you backed us in and here is your reward."

Tasmanian Hospitality Association general manager Steve Old said the money was not a kickback for helping the Liberals get elected.

"We have shown on the record that we do amazing stuff for hospitality industry for Tasmania and it is the best bang for buck for government."

Mr Old said Labor had offered to boost the association's funding per year to $1 million.

"We put a detailed policy to both major parties mid to late last year in relation to how we are going to grow the hospitality industry and deal with the issues about workforce development, skills shortages." he said.

Mr Wilkie said Labor's funding promise was an attempt to "pay-off" the hospitality industry.

"That obviously backfired," he said.

Mr Old said the hospitality industry was the third largest sector in the state and other representative bodies received much more support.

The Liberals have denied the extra funding for THA is a kickback.

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