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Royal Life Saving’s Justin Scarr sees opportunities for aquatic facility infrastructure in Federal budget

Royal Life Saving’s Justin Scarr sees opportunities for aquatic facility infrastructure in Federal budget
May 17, 2021

Royal Life Saving Society - Australia (RLSSA) has highlighted that opportunities for aquatic facility infrastructure exist in the Australian Government’s announcement in the 2021/22 Federal Budget of an expansion of the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) Program.

Intended to help communities recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal budget’s commitment of an additional $1 billion to the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program - which supports local councils in delivering priority local community infrastructure projects - brings the program’s total commitment to $2.5 billion.

Advising that such infrastructure projects could include local aquatic facilities across Australia, Royal Life Saving Chief Executive, Justin Scarr advised that the Federal funding is a good way of improving existing aquatic infrastructure, particularly for aging aquatic facilities which have been in desperate need of support for a long time.

Scarr explained “Royal Life Saving have been talking with governments for some time about the state of regional public pool infrastructure around the country and the need for rejuvenation.

“This funding announcement is a welcome option for those (and other) aquatic facilities to continue to service their communities and enhance the social health and economic outcomes in their local communities, particularly through the provision of swimming and water safety education.”

From 1st January 2022, councils will be able to access funding through LRCI Program Phase 3, with projects under the Program to be delivered by 30th June 2023.

These projects must deliver benefits to the community, such as improved accessibility, visual amenity, and/or safety. Some examples of the areas that may apply to community aquatic recreation facilities include:

  • Closed Circuit TV (CCTV);
  • Painting or improvements to community facilities (which could include swimming pools);
  • Repairing and replacing fencing;
  • Improved accessibility of community facilities and areas;
  • Landscaping improvements, such as tree planting and beautification of roundabouts;
  • Noise and vibration mitigation measures; and
  • Off-road car parks (such as those at aquatic facilities).

The Royal Life Saving initial analysis of the Federal Budget proposes that the budget contains some additional measures of varying relevance to the Aquatic Industry, depending on their ownership model and/or location.

Click here for more information on the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program.

Click here to view the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program Guidelines.

Images: Bendigo's Gurri Wanyarra Wellbeing Centre (top) and Royal Life Saving's Justin Scarr (top).

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