Funding hopes hiJJacked

THE Kilmore Football Club’s drive for new social club rooms at the JJ Clancy Reserve saw a setback on several fronts – a miss of significant funding in this year’s budget and a lack of councillor support to have the project listed in an application to a major government grant fund.

Despite petitions supporting the project and containing close to 600 signatures councillors chose not to support an alternative motion by Cr Bob Humm to have the project included in council’s pending application to the 2018 Growing Suburbs Fund.

“This project ticks a lot of boxes and in my view is a worthy candidate for funding through this government program,” Cr Humm told the June meeting of Mitchell Shire Council.
However, other councillors did not see it that way with Cr Bill Chisholm suggesting that there should be ‘no queue jumping’ as far as the fund applications were concerned.

“We should be careful not to present the government with a Christmas wish list,” Cr Eldridge added.

Defending his motion, Cr Humm described the 60 year-old rooms as ‘well past their use by date.’

Cr Humm’s motion was put to the vote with councillors Humm, Stevens, Atkinson and Chisholm voting for and councillors Eldridge, Sanderson, Lowe and Cornish voting against. Cr Annie Goble was not at the meeting, the casting vote fell to the mayor and the alternative motion was lost.

“It is vital that the Kilmore community gets new rooms. There are 293 kids registered with the Kilmore junior clubs and they deserve better than huddling under a temporary gazebo on match days,” Cr Humm later told the North Central Review.

On the budget front – residents attending the Kilmore community pre-budget meeting observed that the then draft budget contained expenditure for the reconstruction of four tennis courts at the JJ Clancy Reserve. Some in attendance suggested that the priority should be for the football club rooms or a sharing across both.

In a submission to the budget, Kilmore Football Club representative, Paul Maher, presented a request for funding for the new club rooms. The officer’s recommendation in response was that Mr Maher be advised that council had allocated $40,000 for planning and design of the new pavilion.

A note to the recommendation also suggested that council plans to make a submission to Sport and Recreation Victoria’s 2019/20 grant funding to undertake planning and feasibility work for the project.

It is unclear if the $40,000 allocation in the current budget is in addition to or actually grant funds that council hopes to receive. Either way this puts actual construction of the new pavilion well beyond 2020.

An officer’s report states that the highest priority for pavilions is the Harley Hammond netball/tennis facility in Broadford. That, along with the $600,000 allocated for the tennis court works in Kilmore shows a convincing win by the round ball (of differing sizes) over the Sherrin.