Turf fund­ing re­quest re­jected

Geraldton Guardian - - Front Page - Francesca Mann

The Won­thella Bowl­ing Club had its re­quest for fund­ing knocked back by the City of Greater Ger­ald­ton at the or­di­nary coun­cil meet­ing last week.

Coun­cil­lors voted 9-2 in favour of the ex­ec­u­tive rec­om­men­da­tion not to sup­port the club’s Com­mu­nity Sport­ing and Re­cre­ation Fa­cil­i­ties Fund An­nual Grant ap­pli­ca­tion.

The club was re­quest­ing a onethird con­tri­bu­tion of $144,602 to­wards the re­place­ment of two turf greens with syn­thetic bowl­ing greens.

The mo­tion rec­om­mends that the club ap­ply for the CSRFF Small Grant Scheme in­stead.

Club pres­i­dent Kevin Exton said he was dis­ap­pointed, but the club could live with re­plac­ing one green.

“One will do — it’s a start; but we will need another one within a cou­ple of years,” he said.

“Bowls WA have stated within 1015 years there won’t be any grass greens in the State.

“We’re try­ing to fu­ture-proof our club for 50 years down the track.”

Exton said there were sev­eral ad­van­tages to hav­ing syn­thetic greens, such as re­duc­ing the amount of wa­ter, main­te­nance and drainage needed.

Syn­thetic greens can also be played on all year round, in­clud­ing in the rain.

At the coun­cil meet­ing, Mayor Shane Van Styn made the mo­tion and urged coun­cil­lors to re­main con­sis­tent with pre­vi­ous de­ci­sions.

“We’ve set a prece­dent for not fund­ing the Surf Life Sav­ing Club and cut­backs to the ten­nis club,” he said.

“We need to con­tinue to do the same for the Won­thella Bowl­ing Club. We don’t have the funds, it’s far too much.”

Cr Michael Rey­mond, who voted against the mo­tion, said the syn­thetic greens would help im­prove the club’s fa­cil­i­ties.

“A large num­ber of peo­ple use the fa­cil­ity,” he said.

“I be­lieve the club has the op­por­tu­nity to im­prove the fa­cil­i­ties, which will at­tract more com­pe­ti­tions and tourism.”

Exton said the club would sub­mit an ap­pli­ca­tion for the small grant scheme.

Pic­ture: Francesca Mann

Won­thella Bowl­ing Club pres­i­dent Kevin Exton said syn­thetic greens would fu­ture­proof the club.

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