Deputy Premier and Member for Stuart Dan van Holst Pellekaan has announced a re-elected Marshall Liberal Government will give $3 million to the ‘Friends of the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden Donation Trust’ to upgrade the much-loved Garden.
“I’m delighted to be able to fund the Friends of the Garden to upgrade this fantastic tourist attraction in Port Augusta and further enhance its display of our region’s unique flora and fauna,” said Deputy Premier Dan van Holst Pellekaan.
“The Marshall Government’s funding will enable the Friends group to determine how best to use this funding for the benefit of the Garden and all those who enjoy it.
“The Garden is a wonderful tourist attraction for Port Augusta and this upgrade will attract even more people to our town, spending their money in the local shops and generating local jobs.
“The Friends Trust has strict and legally enforceable expenditure rules focused only on what is best for the Garden, so we know the $3 million will be used for the right purpose by the right people.”
“The Marshall Government’s decision to provide the $3 million directly to the Friends of the Garden is in stark contrast to Labor’s plan to give the money to the Council to cover its operating losses.
“Our approach will relieve Port Augusta ratepayers of the burden of the Council’s operating losses while simultaneously guaranteeing the money goes to the Garden.
“The Friends provide their time and effort to the Gardens for free and their constitution requires them spend any money they receive directly on the Garden.
“We have also agreed to evaluate with the Friends group and Council whether Port Augusta’s Arid Lands Botanic Garden would benefit from joining the Adelaide Botanic Garden and others in the State Government’s network of Botanic Gardens.”
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