28 Jul 2013

Grants board stipulates third of funds for quake-proofing from owner

3:03 pm on 28 July 2013

The Lotteries Grants Board says any organisations wanting money for earthquake strengthening would have to find a third of the money themselves.

Building owners face growing costs to keep their structures safe.

There are about 3000 earthquake-prone, historic buildings nationwide.

The Government has given no assurances it will meet the costs and many owners cannot afford to do the work.

Some owners have spoken of going to the Lotteries Grants Board.

The Lotteries Grants Board says it does have $30 million over two years for earthquake strengthening, but must share it with other, large community projects.

Secretary Robyn Nicholas said the board generally requires one third to be funded by the owner of the building.

The Historic Places Trust conceded on Saturday it cannot save all earthquake-prone historic buildings, without Government assistance.

A spokesperson for the Minister for Building and Construction said historic issues were being considered, but would not give any more detail.

Proposals that include requiring 15,000 - 25,000 old buildings to be strengthened to 33% of the modern building code, will be heard by the Cabinet next week.