Kilmore's JJ Clancy Reserve.

KILMORE’S JJ Clancy Reserve is the largest of Mitchell Shire Council’s latest applications to the State Government’s Growing Suburbs Fund, with council planning a $3.8 million integrated community facility.

The fund provides grants for shovel-ready infrastructure projects in interface and peri-urban councils.

Minister for Local Government Shaun Leane announced a further $50 million for the fund as part of a new round of grants in late November.

In addition to the JJ Clancy Reserve facility, council has also lodged funding applications for activating open space at Beveridge Recreation Reserve and upgrades to the play space at Seymour’s Chittick Park.

The cost of the JJ Clancy Reserve facility is estimated at $3.8 million, with council providing $400,000 and applying for $3.4 million through the fund.

Council will pay $550,000 of a $1.3 million total for the Beveridge Recreation Reserve project and $200,000 of an $800,000 total for the Chittick Park project if the bids are successful.

Cr Fiona Stevens said the JJ Clancy Reserve project had been submitted for government funding three times.

“We’re hoping we might have some success with this one,” she said.

The reserve, which functions as a community sport and recreation hub, is currently home to more than 900 registered users, more than 80 per cent are juniors.

The reserve supports tennis, netball, athletics and football competitions, and hosts several community events annually.

The proposed integrated community facility would offer a space for a broad range of community activities and events at the reserve.

Cr Annie Goble said the Growing Suburbs Fund was an important way for council to secure funding for infrastructure projects.

“We’ve done so well from these Growing Suburbs Fund grants in the past few years, certainly in the four previous years I’ve been on council,” she said.

“It has really been to the benefit of the community.

“I’d like to thank the State Government and local representatives because they’ve taken on board a lot of the projects we’ve recommended to them, and taken them on with gusto.

“We really appreciate it and we look forward to working with the State Government to get more facilities for this huge growing shire, especially down in the south where there is a lot of infrastructure that is needed.

“JJ Clancy is really overdue, so we’re looking forward to that.”