FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO DECIDE FATE OF FRANKSTON BASKETBALL STADIUM EXPANSION PROJECT
As announced on Thursday 8 March 2018 by the federal member for Dunkley, Mr Chris Crewther MP, the federal Minister for Regional Development, Territories and Local Government the Hon. Dr John McVeigh MP has issued correspondence to Frankston City Council CEO Dennis Hovenden regarding the Commonwealth government’s $4.95 million investment in the scheduled $12.45 million expansion of Frankston basketball stadium at Kananook Reserve, Seaford.
As a follow-up to this correspondence, Mr Crewther MP has requested to meet with representatives from Frankston City Council and the Frankston & District Basketball Association (Frankston Basketball) scheduled for 9am Friday 16 March 2018.
Frankston Basketball General Manager Nathan Jolly believes recent correspondence between the federal government and council has the potential to act as a much needed circuit breaker which allows Frankston City Council to re-engage in the process council publicly withdrew from in late 2017.
“Mr Crewther advised earlier this year that a meeting would be scheduled between parties to work through the current predicament the project finds itself in. A project which is fully funded and is delivering $3 to rate payers for every $1 council has invested – a model project in anyone’s language.
The builder has been on site for the last 12 months ready to commence major construction works, along with Frankston Basketball having signed the future lease in October 2017. From Frankston Basketball’s perspective there is no reason why the project cannot start immediately once council sign the future lease.
We hope Friday’s meeting can be the turning point so the community can finally achieve its vision of a nationally recognised basketball facility that delivers programs that ultimately contribute to the social wellbeing of our community.” Jolly said.
After announcing in late 2017 council’s intention to ‘reallocate’ the Commonwealth’s $4.95 million funds which were successfully lobbied in partnership with Frankston Basketball, and specified to be for the expansion of Frankston basketball stadium, Frankston City Council have been further developing an alternate project which Jolly says will be primarily a netball-focused facility based at Jubilee Park.
“The feedback we have received since Acting CEO Tim Frederico advised the association of council’s intention to withdraw from the stadium expansion project is that council have been completing due diligence on how they can utilize the Commonwealth’s funding that was designated for the basketball stadium project. At this stage the feedback is that council intend on fast-tracking the construction of a multi-sports facility at Jubilee Park which would be managed by council owned Peninsula Leisure Pty Ltd.
Although Frankston Basketball supports the building of sports infrastructure in our region based on growing participation rates, the association does not support what we believe is the corporatization of sport in our region. It is the preference of Frankston Basketball; governing bodies Basketball Victoria & Basketball Australia; and the state government that the expansion of Frankston basketball stadium continues which has been our advice to Mr Crewther through this process.” Jolly said.
A positive the association is taking from the federal government’s recent intervention is that the expansion of Frankston basketball stadium has now reached the highest levels of the Turnbull government with the forthcoming meeting with Mr Crewther MP being the tipping point the project requires.
Frankston Basketball President Gary Emery, who was recently recognized by Basketball Victoria for 35 years service to the sport, stated “Frankston Basketball welcomes the opportunity to attend this meeting, which members of Basketball Victoria and Basketball Australia are planning on attending, along with Australian representatives and Olympians David Andersen & Ryan Broekhoff to hear firsthand what Mr Crewther’s and by extension the Turnbull government’s plan is to overcome this current set-back and get this much needed project, which thousands of families will benefit from, to finally start.
As an association who has been a positive touchpoint for the community since the late 1950s we believe the expansion of Frankston basketball stadium is well overdue and look forward to working with the federal government in achieving this significant regional project which will be a legacy of all stakeholders involved.” Emery said.
As the long term tenant of Frankston basketball stadium since 1979, the membership of Frankston Basketball funded the initial construction of the two (2) courts built on council land at Bardia Ave, Seaford. In 1992 the association funded the $1.65 million four (4) court expansion which took the total number of courts to six (6).
Today Frankston Basketball is a community of over 14,500 registered players; coaches; and officials and is the home association of Australian representatives David Andersen (4-time Olympian: Athens, Beijing, London, Rio); Ryan Broekhoff who made his Olympic debut in 2016 (Rio); and 4-time Olympic referee John Holden.
Click here to show your support for the much needed expansion of Frankston basketball stadium.
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