The Albany Surf Life Saving Club has secured $400,000 in cash and in-kind support from the City of Albany, with councillors making it clear the pledge will be the City’s final contribution to the club’s $2.5 million building expansion. Councillors voted on Tuesday night to support the club’s pitch for $300,000 in funding and a $100,000 in-kind contribution to the expansion of its Middleton Beach base. The club has already secured $1.6m from the State Government and says it will use the City’s funds to leverage further funding opportunities. Speaking to councillors before the vote, Albany Surf Life Saving Club vice-president Carl Richardson said the expansion was needed to boost safety and account for “exponential club growth”. The club had recorded a 42 per cent swell in membership over the past five years, with close to 500 members on the books, he said. “The redevelopment will improve the facility for community groups,” Mr Richardson said. “It will improve lifesaving services, emergency response and the training facilities.” Mr Richardson said the expansion would allow the club to add a purpose-built first aid room, host more community groups, and safely store and operate equipment. At a committee meeting this month, Cr Emma Doughty moved an amendment to cap the City’s support for the project at $400,000. Cr Doughty noted it was likely to be two years before construction started and there was potential for the estimated $2.5m cost to grow given the market for contractors and supplies. Speaking at Tuesday night’s meeting, Deputy Mayor Greg Stocks said investment in expansion of the building was “another piece in the puzzle” for the City’s Middleton Beach redevelopment. “As our population grows we must commit to social infrastructure if we are going to think about this being a unique place to live, work and play where anything is possible,” he said. “It is important that we support this surf club expansion project.” The motion was carried 8-3 with Crs Chris Thomson, Alison Goode and John Shanhun voting against it. Cr Sandie Smith did not vote because of a personal interest in the item.