18 November 2018

Surf Coast Shire must put the community first and back an aquatic centre

I am very disappointed to learn that Surf Coast Shire has declined to apply for a Federal Government grant under the Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF) to help construct a Surf Coast Aquatic Centre.

Funding applications closed on 15 November 2018.

The Liberal Member for South Barwon, Andrew Katos, has made an incredible $10 million commitment to fund a new aquatic centre for Torquay which is vital community infrastructure for children learning to swim, families and seniors.

Having secured matching funding which is a requirement of the BBRF, Council was in the box seat to make this application.

Under such circumstances, it is financially irresponsible for council not to pursue federal funding. Surf Coast residents have missed out on what could have been a grant of up to $10 million for this project.

I am advised that Council did not apply for federal funding because it does not support the development of an aquatic centre. Council, including my Labor opponent who has never genuinely supported an aquatic centre, has failed to put the community first.

I will continue to put the community first by advocating for a Surf Coast Aquatic Centre. At local schools in Torquay, Jan Juc and Bellbrae, teachers, parents and students frequently tell me how desperately this facility is required for their community.

I am asking Surf Coast residents to join Andrew Katos and me in campaigning for a Surf Coast Aquatic Centre. Please sign my petition at: sarahhenderson.com.au/surf-coast-aquatic-centre

I also call on Surf Coast Shire to develop a plan for Winchelsea Pool which requires new shade cloths and better facilities. This pool is not receiving an appropriate amount of care or financial support and this needs to change.

17 November 2018