9 May 2020

Dear Local Authority


The COVID-19 pandemic has placed many of our community sport organisations under significant operational and financial stress.

A financial analysis undertaken by the Association suggests that (in a normal environment), on average 25% of a club's annual income is derived from grant funding, 20% from member subscriptions and 30% from use of facilities, (principally derived from function hire, and food and beverage services).

The current economic and social environment has meant that all of these revenue sources have become significantly impaired, while annual out-goings (rents, utilities, maintenance, etc.), are still required to be paid.

While the acute period of total community shut-down may soon be over, the longer-term economic and social impacts of potentially reduced membership, tight restrictions on social gatherings and limited access to grant-funding will be on-going and not fully realised for some months, (possibly longer).

I am writing to you, to ask your consideration of providing relief for a period of 12 months to community sport organisations which are based in your local territory, from costs associated with the use of council facilities and services. This may include ground-hire charges, use of public training or gymnasium facilities, or rents (or rates) paid to the council on property.

Like you, I am passionate about the social-good that arises from having our local communities fully active in their local sporting clubs and organisations.

We cannot allow them to fail as a result of current circumstances and I hope you will thoughtfully consider my request of you, made on behalf of the Association.

Yours sincerely
Andy Leslie, MNZM
New Zealand Amateur Sport Association Inc.

Andy has had involvement in the Halberg Trust (now a Life Trustee) and is the current President of the New Zealand Rugby Foundation, of which he was an original First Fifteen Member. A former All Black Captain (1974-1976), Andy has the rare distinction of captaining the All Blacks in every test in which he played. He made his Wellington Rugby debut in 1967 and played 147 games for the Wellington Lions, captaining them to a win in the Ranfurly Shield in 1974. A Life Member and former President of the Wellington Rugby Football Union, Andy is also a former President and Life Member of the Centurions Rugby Football Club, and former President of the New Zealand Rugby Union.

Andy has been involved with rugby coaching and in administration from Club to National level, also writing a report for Irish rugby on the state of it's game and it's way forward in the professional era. He has had a passion about the participation of people in sport and recreation, to these ends has been involved with the Hutt City Council in bringing Clubs together to share facilities (buildings, human resource and costs). Andy believes that the Association can contribute "big time" to the survival of Clubs and the participation of all, of all ages, in activities that they choose to be involved with in their communities.