Pool poll dropped

04 July 2016

AlburyCity Councillors have voted at an Extraordinary Meeting of Council to rescind a decision to poll voters at the 10 September local government election on whether they support building an indoor regional aquatic facility at Lauren Jackson Sports Centre and closing Lavington pool.

At the previous Council meeting on 27 June, Councillors had resolved to poll voters at the upcoming AlburyCity election, but three Councillors the next day lodged a rescission motion and Mayor Henk van de Ven called an Extraordinary Meeting of Council.

Cr van de Ven said an Extraordinary Meeting had to be called to resolve the matter in time to meet deadlines set by the NSW Electoral Commission, which will manage the 10 September election.

"This is an important decision and on reflection some Councillors wanted to revisit the matter. There was good discussion and debate at the meeting about the benefit and value of polling voters at the upcoming election," he said.

"The decision to not go ahead with the poll was based on concerns that undertaking a poll before the draft strategy is finalised is premature.

"Council will consider the completed draft strategy and opportunities for further public consultation and engagement in due course. There has been extensive community consultation already and there will be more to come, which will provide an opportunity for everyone in the community to have another say, not just those people eligible to vote ".

Cr van de Ven said the next step was to finalise the more detailed analysis of the two recommended options - the retention and redevelopment of the existing Albury and Lavington swim centres and no new indoor facility, or a new regional indoor aquatic facility at the Lauren Jackson Sports Centre and retain the Albury Swim Centre.

"I'd like to reassure residents that they will get another chance to have a say on this," he said. "It is also important to note that government funding would be sought to build any regional aquatic facility and it would be at least five years before it would open."