THE parliamentarian who organised state government funding of $7 million for the redevelopment of Reid Oval has offered to get the state treasurer to write out a cheque so work can start.
Western Victorian Upper House MP Jame Purcell, who arranged the funding, said he had a letter signed by the treasurer Tim Pallas committing to the funding. The letter was published by The Standard last month.
"We have a copy of a letter signed by the treasurer committing to the $7 million upgrade," he said.
"The money is now available, it's unconditional and works need to start immediately.
"It's already been a couple of weeks since the announcement on Hampden league grand final day.
"There's no reason that work has not started."
Mr Purcell said the funding was unconditional.
"There's no timelines," he said.
"If the city council wants I will organise with the treasurer to write out a cheque.
"All the councillors need to get behind this project," he said.
Warrnambool City Council is working through a process of developing a funding agreement before it says works can start of the $7 million redevelopment plan.
The Standard understands city council chief executive officer Bruce Anson and the council are working with the relevant government agencies to develop a funding agreement for Reid Oval.
The agreement is expected to include a timeline of actions with progress payment milestones.
The council said that without a funding agreement in place no work on the project could be reimbursed through the $7 million allocation.
Calls were made to state treasurer Tim Pallas to clarify the current situation.
On Friday, September 21, Mr Purcell announced he had gained the $7 million for the Reid Oval redevelopment, the south-west’s largest sporting project.
The upgrade means AFL practice matches and other high-profile sporting events can be staged at the ground after massive improvements to the surface, infrastructure and lighting are complete.
The announcement follows months of intensive lobbying from Mr Purcell and the completion of a detailed business plan that estimates the upgrade will inject $88 million into the local economy and create 37 jobs.
"This is a great win and a really exciting development,” Mr Purcell said at the time.