Auckland Sport entity targeting infrastructure

SIMON PLUMB
Last updated 11:40 18/07/2014
Len Brown
Getty Images
AUCKLAND MAYOR: Len Brown.

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Auckland Council has launched a new plan for sport in the super city - though how much funding it will get remains unclear.

Former minister of sport Trevor Mallard was among a number of dignitaries in Auckland last night as Mayor Len Brown formally unveiled the strategic plan for new entity, Auckland Sport.

With Auckland Council looking to make $2.8 billion in cuts and all projects and services up for financial review, Brown told Stuff he wouldn't be able to confirm Auckland Sport's budget until next month.

However, Brown did confirm the areas the new unit would be targeting - including spending on artificial surfaces, turf drainage and floodlighting to continue addressing Auckland's infrastructure availability problem.

Brown said Auckland Sport's work would arch over four key areas - increasing recreation levels, improving infrastructure, enhancing the city's image as an international event destination and developing the sector, including coaches.

"We are developing a budget and it will take 11 months. We haven't set the budget yet, so that's the first thing," Brown said.

"We're going through a process and will look were we kind find efficiencies and savings to make sure we deliver to ratepayers.

"Sport will just sit in amongst all other areas. No area has any more, or any less, focus in terms of getting the very best bang for buck."

Brown said more detail would be known on August 29 when he presented a draft budget to council.

"In terms of sport there is no doubt that we have spent disproportionate on facility upgrades - because we had to. We'd got a lot of sport fields that were being shut down in winter by being rained out, so we added an extra $17 million per annum to a $20m budget, basically doubled it, to get the job done.

"We haven't made any decisions yet. We're in the early stages of analysis. I will prepare a draft budget and present it to council on August 29."

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