Norwood Payneham & St Peters Council has agreed to contribute $2 million to help fund the new Norwood Oval Clubrooms and Members Facilities Project, with the remaining $3.332 million to be funded by the Norwood Football Club.
The decision was made at a Special Council Meeting held on Tuesday 26 May, where the Council considered a Prudential Report prepared by Mr Mark Booth of BRM Holdich, which looked at the financial viability and risks associated with the Project.
The Local Government Act 1999 requires Councils to prepare a Prudential Report when considering projects such as this.
“There is no question that, when completed, the new Clubrooms and Members Facilities will be the best of any SANFL Club, and will help to ensure that Norwood remains strong off-field as well on-field,” Mayor Robert Bria said.
“At the same time, the new Facilities will be an asset for the whole community.”
Mayor Bria said that while the Council indicatively set aside $1 million for the Project, the Prudential Report showed that a $2 million contribution would have minimal impact on the Council’s Long Term Financial Plan.
“This an exciting and important project for the Norwood Football Club and the community, and the Council is supportive of the Club’s aspirations to provide a high standard facility, but this has to be put into the context of ensuring that ratepayers are not exposed to unreasonable financial risks,” Mayor Bria said.
Under the proposed arrangements, the Club need to assure the Council that the $2 million it receives from the SANFL over the next seven years as its dividend from the sale of AAMI Stadium, will be used exclusively for loan repayments to cover the cost of the Project.
Mayor Bria said Council is also satisfied that the gift of $500,000 to the Club is bona fide.
He also said that he hoped the Council would be in a position to go out to tender for the Project by October, and did not envisage the construction phase would have a negative impact on patrons watching matches during the 2016 football season.
“Unlike the other options previously considered by the Council (Coopers Hill and the Sir Edwin T. Smith Stand), the advantage of the Baulderstone Stand site is that it is contained to a relatively small area, and construction can proceed without impacting on the playing of football,” Mayor Bria said.
The proposal will now go out to community consultation for three weeks. A report compiling feedback from the consultation process, as well as the outcome of discussions with the Club about the financial arrangements, will then be presented to the Council for consideration.