I believe in the importance of community sport. Children benefit immensely from being involved in sport from a young age. They learn team work and discipline. They have structure added to their weekly routines. They learn to love being outside, and experience the endorphins released when they exercise. They learn that being fit and healthy actually makes them happy.
As adults, community sport brings people together from all walks of life. It helps to build a sense of community and shared purpose. It keeps us fit and healthy and wards off chronic diseases, decreasing the burden on healthcare services in the long run.
Community sport also relies on tireless volunteers, who run the clubs, man the barbecues and canteens, referee games and coach kids and adults. Again, volunteering gives people in the community a sense of purpose and giving back.
All in all, community sport is incredibly important to our communities for a wide range of reasons.
Throughout my campaign, I have met with many different sporting clubs and associations. At every meeting, there has been two common themes:
Community sports don't have enough facilities to meet community demand
Community sports facilities need upgrading to ensure maximum utilisation
If elected to Hobart City Council this October I will work to:
Establish a whole of sport master plan: This plan should take a global view of all facilities in Hobart LGA and identify long term strategic priorities and vision for the future of community sports in Hobart
Initiate a community sports lighting grant program:
To upgrade facilities to LED lights
Assess the need for additional light towers
Install lighting where there is currently none
Improve drainage across all playing surfaces: Many playing surfaces are unusable for half the season, despite living in the second driest capital city in Australia.
Ensure State and Federal grants are matched: Work with other levels of government to ensure that projects that require 50/50 funding are funded, even if that is an unplanned spend for the council (after all, thats half price facilities for the people of Hobart!)
Fast track development applications: It shouldn't take months to have a digital score board approved, or an upgrade to change rooms. These facilities benefit the community and should be brought to the top of the pile when development applications are assessed.
Secure an Ice Sports Venue for Hobart: Work with stakeholders, including Ice Sports Tasmania, The State Government and Private investors to ensure Tasmania's only ice rink is built in Hobart LGA.
If elected, I will continue to work with the sporting community to ensure Hobart provides facilities to the standard expected of a capital city that serve our community's needs .
I will be a champion for community sports in Hobart.