INDEPENDENT NEWS

Major District Initiative – Funding policy

Published: Thu 21 Dec 2006 02:17 PM
Media Release
Major District Initiative – Funding policy
21 December 2006.
Community Projects viewed as critical.
The West Coast Development Trust has risen to the call for more support of community funded facilities.
After considering submissions from West Coast Councils the West Coast Development Trust has today released their final Major District Initiative funding policy which recognises the importance of supporting significant community assets.
The key changes to the funding policy include a significant increase in the amount of funding available from 50% to 65% of the capital cost of a project. The Trust will make available a target of $400,000 each year to each of the District Councils for approved projects.
“Since funding for Community projects commenced we have steadily increased our funding support from around one third to two thirds,” said Trust CEO Mike Trousselot. “This increase recognizes the importance we place on supporting high quality community assets, which we believe are critical if we are to retain and attract people to the Coast. Facilities like the Greymouth Aquatic Centre are essential if the region is to remain competitive.”
Mayor Tony Kokshoorn said the announcement is a great breakthrough for the Aquatic Centre and the generous community funding will enable the “go” button to be pushed for this much anticipated project.
“The Aquatic Centre will be a family facility which will be used by both young and old” said Mr Kokshoorn, “there will be hot spas and hydroslides and it will play a big role in family activities. Not only that, it will assist in the retention of professional people and their families who have the skills much needed in the Grey District” he said.
“Without this funding from the Development Trust it would be impossible to fund these huge projects and this increased funding opportunity is a classic example of the Trust working for the people.”
Mayor of Buller District Council Martin Sawyers, said “the economic future of the West Coast depends on making sure we have lifestyle infrastructure. The MDI funding will make what were previously dreams a reality.”
“Here in Buller we have a number of community projects identified under Vision 2010 and they rely on us raising about $11.5million. The money we receive through the Development Trust’s MDI funding scheme will account for a significant proportion of this,” said Mr Sawyers.
CEO of the Trust, Mike Trousselot said “the good news is the Trust has been earmarking the funds since July 2005 which means that the year ending March 2007, then each of the District Councils will have accumulated $700,000 available to them at that time.”
Mr Trousselot said the Major District Initiative funding is available for the Capital cost ofcommunity projects and the trust could support any one project for a maximum term of 15 years.
ENDS

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