"IT'S an absolute cock-up - it's a debacle...tourism in this region is in a terrible state at the moment!"
That's the strong opinion of outspoken former chairman of Limestone Coast Tourism James Yates.
Mr Yates oversaw the body in the early 1990s, when it was a flourishing organisation with over 300 members, but he is not currently a financial member.
The well-known tourism figure is particularly unhappy with the State Government taking away the printed regional visitor guide from being a local production - instead producing it in Adelaide.
"Tourism SA (now known as the SA Tourism Commission) has basically screwed the group by taking away the funding and the regional guide," he told the Herald.
"And when they released one it wasn't released until after Christmas which was a complete and utter waste of time."
But that isn't Mr Yates's only gripe with the SA Tourism Commission - he is crying out against the "rank favouritism shown to other parts of SA" - in particular Kangaroo Island.
He said the State Government had put $17.7 million worth of funding into the island, on top of a $6 million advertising campaign.
He compared the funding for Kangaroo Island to the redevelopment of Mount Gambier Airport, which promises a tangible benefit to tourism in the region.
"Compared to Kangaroo Island, (the contribution to the airport) is just drops in the water," he said.
"Local operators should tell Tourism SA to get stuffed."
Mr Yates made it clear he didn't have a problem with all sectors of the government body - taking aim at what he called "middle management.
"The CEO is on the ball but the middle management is jealous of regional organisations," he said.
On October 17 Mr Yates attempted to make contact with Shadow Tourism Minister David Ridgway and Member for MacKillop Mitch Williams - but much to his disappointment he was yet to receive any correspondence.
He felt campaigning for the regional tourism body could be a handy boost for the case for either political party in an upcoming election.
Mr Yates attended last week's meeting in Penola where the demise of Limestone Coast Tourism was discussed but could not proceed due to the small attendance.
"If Limestone Coast Tourism is shut down, then this region's tourism will have no body to represent it for the first time since the 1970s," he said.
"If you don't have an umbrella organisation it won't work."
He is dead against the proposed winding up of the tourism body.
"The current situation is a disaster, the survival of Limestone Coast Tourism is essential," he concluded.