Crab Fest has been cancelled for the third year in a row, with the City of Mandurah making the decision to shelve its signature event.
Councillors made the decision to scrap the event based on "uncertainty surrounding COVID-19" when borders open.
Under the current state government guidelines Crab Fest could go ahead as planned, however, there will be a review of the rules four weeks post the border opening.
City officers outlined there was no guarantee that amendments won't be made that could have implications on the City's capacity to deliver the event, therefore the safest decision was to cancel the event.
Mandurah mayor Rhys Williams said the decision to cancel was a "responsible" one.
"There is no doubt Crab Fest is a major injection into the local community with the event bringing around $8.3 million a year into the local economy," he said.
"That won't be there in 2022 but the more dire circumstance is to proceed with the planning and then having to make a last minute cancellation or where the event goes ahead but the numbers anticipated don't turn up.
"It's a difficult decision to make but it's a decision that absolutely is the right one - it's common sense."
In normal circumstances, Crab Fest would attract around 100,000 but based on modelling in the Eastern states there would be fairly suppressed community attendance if the event went ahead.
"If we go forward in planning there's investment by local government and businesses so to stop the event now is a responsible decision," Mr Williams said.
"At this point businesses have plenty of notice and the feedback from them has been 'thank you for making this decision early'."
Funds earmarked for Crab Fest 2022 will now be used to deliver events in the second half of the year.
Mr Williams was optimistic Crab Fest would return in 2023.
"Crab Fest is one of those events that has such a long, rich history," Mr Williams said.
"It's a significant and iconic part of the Mandurah story so we're confident in 2023 Crab Fest will be back bigger and better than ever."
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