Do you want the Woodburn pool to stay open?
A COMMUNITY meeting will help Richmond Valley Council decide on the future of the Woodburn Swimming Pool.
Richmond Valley Council is holding a community meeting in Woodburn on June 12 to discuss long-term options for the community pool, as well as and other opportunities for Woodburn.
At council's meeting in May, councillors resolved to consult with the community on the future of the Woodburn Pool before undertaking essential maintenance works on the facility, which are required before it can open for the 2019-20 summer.
The council's general manager Vaughan Macdonald said the Woodburn facility required more than $200,000 of essential infrastructure works before it could be reopened for the 2019-20 summer season.
Mr Macdonald said the council had allocated $210,000 in the 2019-20 draft budget for a new filtration system, plus a further $60,000 for essential works in 2020-21.
Under the current contract for the operation of the pools, the council pays $45,300 for the facility to be opened 27 weeks of the year from 3-6pm Monday-Friday and 12-5pm Saturday and Sunday.
"The purpose of the public meeting is to better understand the community's needs and priorities for Woodburn, which will change significantly when the Pacific Highway bypass opens,” Mr Macdonald said.
"Council understands that our communities enjoy having services available, but the challenge for council is to ensure that investment in infrastructure is well directed to meet the current and future needs of the residents in each community.”
Mr Macdonald said the "core part of council's 10-year Community Strategic Plan is to connect people and places and provide good quality public facilities”.
"We want to ensure that money spent in Woodburn is invested in appropriate infrastructure that is valued by the majority of the community both now and into the future,” he said.
"The Woodburn pool facility is not in line modern aquatic facilities and at some point in time a decision will need to be made to either invest substantial funds to renew the facility, or rationalise the provision of aquatic facilities given there is a modern facility in Evans Head 10 minutes away.”
The council is also distributing a community survey about the pool and other priorities for the town, along with an invitation to the June 12 meeting.
The meeting on Wednesday June 12 will commence at 6pm at the Woodburn Memorial Hall.