LegCo Paper No. CB(2) 1480/95-96
(These minutes have been seen
by the Administration)
Ref : CB2/PL/RC
Staff in Attendance :
- Mrs Anna LO
- Chief Assistant Secretary (2) 2
- Mr Raymond LAM
- Senior Assistant Secretary (2) 6
As the Chairman was not available for the meeting due to other commitments, the Deputy Chairman took the chair of the meeting.
(LegCo Paper Nos. CB(2) 1216 & 1259/95-96)
2. Mr Andrew MA and Dr Dennis Whitby presented SDB's views and stated that adequate provision of sports facilities was fundamental to the implementation of sports development programme and athlete development. Sports development strategy could not exist in isolation and without adequate facilities provision. As sports facilities were catered for promotion of sports for all, there were not sufficient sports facilities for use by National Sports Associations (NSAs). The development of athletes was a long process involving a number of stages. Sufficient sports facilities should be provided to NSAs to facilitate the early stage development of athletes for the 2002 Asian Games and 2004 Olympic Games. As sports facilities managed by the Urban Council (UC) and the Regional Council (RC) were open to the public and NSAs, the NSAs had to compete with the public for prime time. The SDB hoped that more prime time slots could be allocated to NSAs. The Planning Standards and Guidelines should be updated to match the modern trend of sports development and the facilities needs of NSAs. They urged the Administration to consult all major stakeholders in sports in the review.
3. Members were generally of the view that the Administration should take the lead in coordinating the work between SDB and the Municipal Councils (MCs) and increasing their communication. Mr MOK Ying-fan commented that while sports facility was one of many basic elements in the development of athletes, other elements such as adequacy of financial resources and manpower were also important.
4. Mr Benjamin TANG shared the view that cooperation between MCs and SDB should be strengthened. He pointed out that in response to a member's suggestion at the last meeting, the SDB had already taken steps to strengthen liaison with the RC. The Recreation & Culture Branch (RCB) recognised the MCs and SDB as independent statutory bodies and would only participate in their meetings if invited.
5. In reply to members, Miss IP Hay Wood explained that close communication was maintained with CSCs. The SDB had recently met CSCs in the New Territories and it would continue, in association with NSAs, to provide support for the CSCs. Mr Benjamin TANG added that the MCs were also indirectly financing CSCs through providing support for community sports events.
6. Mr NGAN Kam-chuen suggested that NSAs and HKSI could get involved in the promotion of sports for the general public.
7. Mr A F M Conway stated that ASF & OC supported the management of sports facilities by MCs. He opined that all relevant sports parties should be consulted in the review of Hong Kong Planning Standards and Guidelines. While the Administration had consulted the SDB, the ASF & OC and NSAs had not been consulted. In response, Mr Bosco FUNG stated that, to his knowledge, the ASF & OC was one of the parties consulted. Further views, if any, could also be provided to the Administration for consideration.
8. As regards the provision of open space in educational institutions, Mr Bosco FUNG stated that revisions would be made to the planning standards and guidelines, if the study being undertaken by Planning Department revealed such a need. He cautioned however that it would be difficult to provide comprehensive facilities for individual schools since land was scarce in Hong Kong.
9. As regards the lower usage rate of some RC leisure facilities in 1995 mentioned in the paper provided by the RC, Mr David CHIU explained as follows :
(a) The utilisation of some squash courts in the outlying islands was very low, which led to a lower overall usage rate.
(b) The usage rate of Bowling Greens was low as the activity had just been introduced after the completion of two Bowling Greens in the New Territories about a year ago. There was, however, a trend of increasing utilisation of the facility.
10. Members noted a submission from Hong Kong Water Ski Association. The LegCo Secretariat would provide a copy of the submission to the Administration, which would furnish the Panel with a written response after the meeting.
11. As regards the question of whether the Administration had any plans to allocate venues for water sports activities, Mr Benjamin TANG stated that the Administration was in support of developing water sports. Besides a number of beaches managed by the MCs, water sports centres were operated by the RC as well as voluntary agencies. A new water sports centre was under planning by the Urban Council (UC). The RCB was also studying whether the number of beaches should be increased.
12. Mr MOK Ying-fan stated that the provision of sufficient and suitable land was important to the development of sports. He stated as an example that a school recently allocated a landfill site for construction of a sports ground had to overcome a number of environmental problems before the land was suitable for use. He urged the Administration to give careful consideration in the allocation of land. In response, Mr Bosco FUNG stated that while land was scarce in Hong Kong, the Administration would try its best to meet the needs of schools. Mr Benjamin TANG added that the RCB was looking at the possibility of making some military and landfill sites available for sports use.
13. In response to Members, Mr Bosco FUNG assured that the findings of the 1996 bi-census conducted by the Census and Statistics Department would be considered in the review. The results of the bi-census would however not be available until next year.
(LegCo Paper Nos. CB(2) 1216 & 1259/95-96)
Provision of office and ancillary space for ADC and arts groups
14. Representatives of ADC presented their submission and stated that the ADC, which was paying substantial rents for its current office, needed its own office and meeting venue. Spaces were also needed for ADC's information centre, activities centre, and mini-exhibition centre. The ADC had requested for the former Marine Police Headquarters in Tsimshatsui to be used as offices for ADC and other arts groups. Should the proposal be accepted, the financial resources released from the leasing of offices could be redeployed to other areas of arts development.
15. In reply, Mr Benjamin TANG agreed to consider the provision of space for ADC's office. He added that as land was scarce in Hong Kong, the ADC might, as an alternative, consider moving their office to places with less expensive rent.
16. In reponse to members, Mr Benjamin TANG explained that the SDB and NSAs were housed in a Sports House, the construction of which was a condition of the re-construction of the Hong Kong Stadium by the Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club (RHKJC). Mr NGAN Kam-chuen suggested that the Administration and ADC might consider requesting similar support from the RHKJC. Mr Benjamin TANG stated that the ADC had written to RHKJC for financial support.
17. Mr Andrew LAM commented that old buildings should be allowed to be used as offices for ADC and arts groups. The Deputy Chairman suggested that consideration might be given to making use of unused quarters of civil servants.
18. Representatives of ADC pointed out that land provision had in the past been focused on facilities for displaying of finished art product. They opined that space for arts creation and other facilities such as information centre, activities centre, and mini-exhibition centre were equally important. Mr Benjamin TANG acknowledged that spaces were needed for arts creation and stated that discussions were being held with the Government Property Administrator.
19. The Deputy Chairman conveyed the Chairman's message that many arts associations had requested for free use of vacant Government premises as their offices. Mr Raymond TAM replied that the procedure had been reported to the Panel in the last legislative session. He undertook to update the relevant information and provide the Panel with a written reply.
20. Mr MOK Ying-fan stated that more space should be provided for arts creation. He added that more should be done on art education in schools and the Administration should encourage the development of visual art. In reply, Mr Benjamin TANG stated that visual art had become a development focus of the ADC. In ADC's five-year plan, there was a section on development of visual art. He assured that more would be done in association with ADC to promote visual art. The ADC had also started work on strengthening art education with the Education Department.
21. Mrs Selina CHOW commented that there should not be too many restrictions on the use of hardware by arts groups. The provision of software was equally important as the provision of hardware. Mr Benjamin TANG replied that the Administration was examining the five-year plan of ADC and considering an increase of funding for arts. He added that the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts was also a software that was fundamental to arts development. On the provision of hardware, the proposed conversion of the former Marine Police Headquarters into a cultural centre and the deployment of other venues for arts use was still under consideration by the Administration. Mr Tony MA stated that the regulations for utilisation of UC facilities had been simplified as far as possible.
22. The Deputy Chairman stated that at a recent meeting with the Financial Secretary, Members had already requested for the increase of resources for art and cultural groups.
23. Mr Tony MA stated that the UC was working on a five-year plan and there was initial consensus that more civic centres should be built. Such civic centres would include exhibition and other ancillary facilities. Upon a more detailed proposal being drawn up, the Council would negotiate with the Administration on siting and funding for the new civic centres. He added that arts groups and the public would be consulted in the process.
24. Members were of the view that co-operation and communication between MCs and ADC should be strengthened. Mr Vincent CHOW informed members that the ADC had recently agreed with the RC to establish a liaison committee. A similar proposal was being discussed with the UC.
25. The meeting ended at 4:15 p.m.
4 June 1996
Last Updated on 23 Jul, 1996