June 11, 2013  |  Adjournment

Creswick Bowling Club: flood relief funding

I wish to raise  an issue with the  Treasurer. I would like the Treasurer to follow up on requests from the Hepburn Shire Council to meet with its representatives in relation to the Creswick  Bowling  Club. The club was washed out in September 2010 and then,  sadly, again  in January  2011, destroying both of its bowling greens and its clubhouse. The club plans to move. It has been  very  pleased  to  receive  allocations  of  funding from the state government of  $900 000  to assist  it. However, it has also sought funding from the   federal   government  under  the  Natural  Disaster  Relief  and  Recovery Arrangements.  Initially it was  advised  by the  state  government that it  was ineligible.

However, the shire, along with the bowling club, followed  up  with  the federal member  for Ballarat, Catherine  King,  who then followed  up  with the  federal Attorney-General, Mark Dreyfus, who wrote  back indicating that  it was possible for Creswick  Bowling  Club  to access  the  funding under  special  conditions, recognising that the club is a very significant recreational venue for people in Creswick, including  the  older population,  and  that  without the  use  of the bowling club the community is severely impaired.

The  Hepburn Shire Council has been trying to contact the Treasurer to follow up on this matter. The club knows that the cost to move to the proposed new site at Lindsay Park would be $2.186 million. That funding falls short at the  moment by about $800  000, which  the club  is hoping  to gain  from  the federal  Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements funding, but it wants to clarify that.

The  club urgently needs the  Treasurer  to meet with it  to  follow up on  this matter and hopefully to support its application  for  the  federal funding so it can gain the full $2.186 million and go ahead and get the full plans into action so the bowling club can be relocated. If the club cannot get this money, it will try to work around it, but it means that instead of having two bowling greens it may only have one initially and lesser facilities in its  clubrooms,  which  are used for lawn bowls too. I urge the Treasurer to respond as quickly as possible. I wrote to him last week, and I hope there will be a quick response.