No definite timelines are yet in place for lighting to appear around Lake Wendouree, despite both major parties committing to the project ahead of the state elections last November.
A local councillor has accused the state government of being slow to release its funding. However, a spokesperson for the Andrews government has said the funding is ready to go.
They said the funding would be released as soon as the City of Ballarat council completed the design phase and confirmed its requirements.
The Andrews government made an election pledge last October, committing $2.5 million in the budget for lighting around the lake's six-kilometre Steve Moneghetti Track, as well as for running tracks in Victoria Park.
The Liberal party had previously pledged $1.7million to the project if elected.
Most people [are for it] once they understand what's it's for and when the lights would be on and the type of lightingSteve Moneghetti
Councillor Amy Johnson, an outspoken supporter of the lake lighting project, raised the topic again at the latest council meeting on Wednesday.
She reminded those present of delays to the state government's sports infrastructure loan, which was also promised last October.
The Andrews government committed the $2.5 million in the most recent budget in May. The Courier understands that Regional Development Victoria would be responsible for dispensing the funding.
A spokesperson for the state government's Regional Development minister Jaclyn Symes said the money would be provided as soon as the City of Ballarat Council confirmed how they wanted the lighting to look.
An emailed statement read: "The City of Ballarat is currently completing the design works for this project."
"We look forward to getting on with this project so that more runners can enjoy these popular tracks all day long, all year round."
Cr Johnson told The Courier that the council had received no request from the state government for designs to date.
In a statement, a City of Ballarat spokesperson said a Cultural Heritage Management Plan had been completed and a lighting consultant engaged. Detailed plans and and cost estimates would inform a funding application, they said, and a series of meetings had already occurred between council officers and Regional Development Victoria. A draft funding application was expected to be complete by the end of September.
Not everyone supports the lighting, with some concerned about the impact on wildlife around the lake. However, former Olympian Steve Moneghetti, said he understood the lights would only be on for limited hours only each evening and in the morning, depending on the time of year.
"For some reason, everyone thinks it's my idea," he told The Courier. "It's not, but I support it. Most people [are for it] once they understand what's it's for and when the lights would be on and the type of lighting."
He said he had seen it used very well in other places like Lake Weerona in Bendigo and Albert Park in Melbourne, but stressed the need for good planning and consultation.
He also said he hoped that the lights would be installed in time for runners to enjoy extended access to the track next winter.
However, he said he had been talking about lights around the lake for more than 20 years and was not relying on a quick turnaround. "[By next winter] would make sense. But I wouldn't be holding my breath," he told The Courier.
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