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Next step to secure funding for regional services

MEDIA RELEASE

1 November 2006


Next step to secure funding for regional services

Eleven groups that provide essential services and facilities to the Auckland region are a step closer to having secure, sustainable funding in the future.

       

An initial independent assessment group has selected the 11 entities against key criteria. The entities will potentially receive regional funding if a Bill going to Parliament next year is successful.

The entities were selected from a group created from both a list of organisations currently funded by councils in the region, and market research with ratepayers.

Auckland City Council Arts, Culture and Recreation Committee chairperson Councillor Penny Sefuiva was delighted to see so many groups that make up the cultural and recreational fabric of the region included in the Bill.

The private Bill, which outlines how funding for groups can be levied from across the region, is currently being drafted and will be presented to Parliament in January 2007.

The 11 groups promoting the draft Bill that will stand to benefit are:

Auckland Festival
Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra
Auckland Rescue Helicopter
Auckland Theatre Company
Auckland Zoo
Coastguard Northern Region
New Zealand National Maritime Museum
NBR New Zealand Opera
Stardome Observatory and Planetarium
Surf Life Saving Northern Region Inc.
WaterSafe Auckland Inc.
Spokesperson for the groups, Steve Johns from Surf Lifesaving Northern Region, says Auckland is a vibrant place to live and it requires world-class facilities and services in arts, culture, entertainment and recreation.

“There are many entities that contribute to the well-being of the Auckland region, providing arts and cultural facilities and important public services to residents and visitors alike,” said Mr Johns.

“We have joined together to support this Bill to ensure that as Auckland region grows we can get secure, sustainable funding so we can continue providing the quality of services the region needs.”

The key focus of the Bill is about everyone in the region getting behind these entities to help them provide world-class facilities for the future. Under the Bill, better regional funding will not replace existing funding sources such as donations and sponsorships. Instead it will provide a consistent funding top-up. There is provision in the Bill to amend the list of entities in the future.

The Bill will outline how qualifying groups will be assessed by a new Auckland Regional Amenities Funding Board, which will include ten independent representatives appointed by the entities and the councils.

The Bill is similar to legislation relating to the funding of the Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT) and the Auckland War Memorial Museum.

Ends

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