With applications closing for round three of the Stronger Country Communities Fund (SCCF) in two weeks, Moree Plains Shire Council have decided which project applications they will endorse.
With $815,000 available for Moree Plains Shire projects, council resolved at its meeting on August 23 to provide letters of support to the Moree Boars application for $300,000 to go towards their new clubhouse and grandstand, $112,000 for the proposed Country Kids Festival, $80,000 for the Moree Cycling Project as well as an application by the Moree Ski Club for the new Mehi Beach and further playgrounds and shelters.
Additionally, council will endorse the Mungindi Tennis Court Revitalisation Project as well as the MAX out MAAC project.
The Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre (MAAC) requires $232,000 to extend its gym facilities.
The MAAC wants to build a new outdoor area to provide more space for its current gym members and bring in new ones.
The MAAC was asking council to provide $60,000 through the Grant Application Reserve (GAR), and by fronting $40,000 themselves, the SCCF grant application would be for $132,000.
"By actually increasing the gym area, we're hoping to provide more area for us to hold functions for community events," MAAC CEO Emma Brazel said.
Ms Brazel said if they were to hold one function a week, that could potentially bring in around $500 per week.
"That's more income that can actually come into this facility to make sure we are being profitable.
"By increasing this space, it does mean we don't need to increase any of our staffing.
"The space could actually still be run with the current staff. It will just actually increase the revenue."
Ms Brazel said the new space would make a big difference, particularly during the facility's peak times of 6am to 9am and 3pm to 8pm.
The MAAC currently has 403 gym members, but believes the new space would bring in another 50 members per year.
"That's one member per week. We could look at, for the $60,000, your return on your investment is after two years," Ms Brazel said.
"At the moment we're holding 16 classes. If we increase that to 20 in the first year, that will actually help with increasing our membership drives as well."
MAAC chair James Von Drehnen said the gym is one of the "shining stars at the MAAC."
"It has some limitations with its area, by expanding this out it means we can sell more memberships," he said.
"More memberships gives us more income. We're looking at less than a two year return."
The Mungindi Tennis Court Revitalisation Project will also be up for the SCCF grant, as the town's tennis courts are in desperate needs of repair.
From round one of the SCCF, one of the three courts had been repaired, with the other two to follow suit should this project be successful in acquiring funding of $203,500.
Councillor Sue Price OAM moved that both the MAAC and Mungindi tennis court projects be endorsed by council, with the Moree Civic Precinct redevelopment to miss out.
"Due to a previous grant, we've got a previous project that's half finished," councillor Sue Price OAM said.
"We owe it to the Mungindi community to fix the mistake and move forward and have something that's fully usable.
"I support the MAAC project because it's not providing ongoing costs to council. It should provide further income into the future with the extension to the gym."
"The tennis court is a gimme to me," councillor Mike Montgomery added.
"The MAAC project I think has some vision that would allow for it to become closer to viability.
"My understanding of the GAR is it's there to assist in putting applications in and it's taken and developed for the MAAC."
The motion was passed by four votes to three.