The Prime Minister has officially opened the Port of Tauranga Rescue Centre today.
The Government committed $2.9 million from the Covid-19 Response and Recovery Fund (CRRF) to secure surf lifesaving facilities for what is one of New Zealand’s most popular stretches of coastline.
“As the largest Surf Life Saving Club in the Bay of Plenty, boasting over 700 members, Omanu Beach Surf Life Saving Club is a crucial part of this community,” the Prime Minister said at today’s opening ceremony.
“Around 150 local people were employed over the course of building this valuable infrastructure, and the benefits will be ongoing not just for the people of Tauranga but for everyone that enjoys the Eastern Region. When we announced the CRRF in July 2020, it was with this specific intention, to create jobs, support industry and provide much-needed economic stimulus across Aotearoa.”
The new Centre serves as a hub for Surf Life Saving Eastern Region, comprising of 19 surf clubs from the top of the Coromandel all the way to Tairāwhiti Gisborne.
The Government funding supported the build of the 1300 square-metre facility, alongside funding from the Port of Tauranga, Tauranga Energy Consumer Trust and other community organisations.
“Investment from the Covid Response and Recovery Fund for surf lifesaving clubs helped replace funds that could not be raised due to COVID-19 restrictions and the loss of traditional funding and fundraising opportunities,” said Minister Stuart Nash.
The $50 billion CRRF was set out in Budget 2020 and earmarked $3 billion for infrastructure project. Twelve surf lifesaving clubs received CRRF funding, totalling $16.99 million.
The building now accommodates clubrooms, offices and storage space for Mount Maunganui Bridge Club, New Zealand Surf Life Saving – Eastern Region, and Omanu Beach Surf Life Saving Club.
“This is a great example of a constructive cross-organisation approach getting the best outcome for their community. The funding support enabled these organisations to take a collaborative approach, resulting in this purpose-built facility which accommodates all their joint needs under one roof,” said Minister Nash.