BURRUMBUTTOCK netball players are “up the creek without a paddle” after the federal government’s cuts to regional infrastructure funding.
Greater Hume Council had been counting on a $93,000 grant from the Regional Development Australia fund for an upgrade of Burrumbuttock recreation reserve’s dilapidated netball courts.
But that funding has now been scrapped, along with projects like the one in Burrumbuttock, leaving the small town in uproar.
President of the recreation reserve Daryl Jacob will today meet with member for Farrer Sussan Ley to call for “some honour and integrity” in fulfilling the promise.
Labor had pledged the cash in the recent federal election campaign, stating it was fully budgeted for regardless of which party won government.
However, as The Border Mail reported this week, that funding has been cut along with any projects with unsigned contracts, as the Coalition makes way for its new $200 million per year National Stronger Regions Fund, due to start in 2015.
But that will be far too late for the Brocklesby-Burrumbuttock Football and Netball Club; the netball courts are in such a state of disrepair the club could be forced to play all their games in Brocklesby next year.
Mr Jacob said the government’s decision was “unfair and unjust”.
“It’s an awful situation, people are in tears,” he said.
“We expected this promise to be honoured, but because the Coalition left it till the 11th hour to make their announcement, we haven’t got the opportunity to apply for other funding ... we’re up the creek without a paddle.”
The Coalition did not announce its intention to cut the Regional Development Fund until the day before the September 7 election.
Mr Jacob said it was an opportunity for Ms Ley to show she has some influence with cabinet.
“I’ve got a lot of respect for Sussan... but now it’s her government that’s pulled the rug out from under us,” he said.