Scheme gives backing for sports projects
As the drums for an astro turf in Porirua beat louder, the ratepayer-funded scheme to support sports projects and groups received a boost this month.
The Shared Responsibility Scheme ( SRS), which the council first adopted in 1991, provides funding for capital projects put forward by community groups on council land. The $1.6 million hockey turf at Elsdon and Ngatitoa Domain cricket centre are two such ventures, with the council and the scheme partner each contributing 25 per cent, and the balance coming from an interest-free loan, repaid by the scheme partner over 15 years.
Before the council is an SRS application for a $1.85m synthetic surface at Ascot Park, submitted by Porirua Vikings league club and Western Suburbs football under the Porirua Synthetic Sportsfield Community Trust banner. They hope to get a decision from PCC before February, when the clubs apply to Lotteries for a grant.
It is also understood other applicants to the SRS will be the consortium looking to build a multipurpose venue at Ngatitoa Domain, a group wanting an artificial athletics track, and Mana Archery for an indoor range.
As part of a review of SRS, the council has agreed to increase its annual funding to $150,000. At the December 8 meeting, Bernie Wood from the Vikings and Peter Gillespie from Wests said PCC’S help was essential as they sought Lotteries’ funding.
Councillors were supportive of an increase to the SRS funding, and the public would be able to weigh in during next year’s long term planning process. Mayor Nick Leggett said it was an opportunity to be frugal, but doubling the SRS pool was a good idea. Deputy mayor Liz Kelly said the new artificial turf at Wakefield Park was used for 800 hours in July and August this year, while it was utilised for just 130 hours over five months in 2010.
The council’s Leisure Asset Management Plan recommends PCC invest in two artificial turfs in 2013/ 14 and 2015/16, at a total cost of $3.6 million.