Council to make bid to be regular host of The Aussies
The Sunshine Coast is set to host The Aussies three times in the next decade with the council poised to enter into extended arrangements for the national surf life saving event.
The contest, currently under way across Maroochydore, Mooloolaba and Alexandra Headland, is likely to become a regular fixture in the region.
Sunshine Coast Council officers have recommended councillors vote to push ahead with sponsorship of three Australian Surf Life Saving Championships during 2023-2032 and refer funding for the events for consideration in the next budget.
The event usually consists of more than 400 events and attracts an average of 313 surf life saving clubs from around the country each year.
The 2016 Sunshine Coast event was estimated to have generated an economic impact of $19.54 million for the local economy.
This year’s event is expected to deliver an economic impact of about $17 million despite the challenges of the pandemic.
Plans to try and host the event every three years were being forged back in 2018 when council staff began discussions with Tourism and Events Queensland.
Council officers outlined the intention of those discussions in their presentation to be made to councillors at next Thursday’s meeting.
Reducing cash and in-kind support required to secure the event, preventing a future “bidding competition” between Queensland-based regions to host and further advancing the council’s “growing partnership” with Tourism and Events Queensland were listed as intentions of the discussions.
It was estimated the council had provided more than $400,000 of in-kind support to host this year’s event.
Future Aussies were recommended by the council’s coastal, constructed water bodies and planning unit manager to be scheduled in April, immediately after the Maroochydore Beach sand renourishment program.
The next sand pumping program is scheduled for June, 2023.
Under terms of the proposed new sponsorship, the council would no longer fund or be required to organise services including traffic control and courtesy buses, which would become the responsibility of Surf Life Saving Australia as event organisers.
Councillors will meet on April 29 to decide whether or not to back the push to play regular host to the event.