CVC prepares its balancing act

Any promises made by the Clarence Valley’s councillors during last year’s election – to oppose a special rate variation (SRV) – are officially dead and buried following last week’s council meeting on Tuesday May 16. Councillors unanimously endorsed applying for an eight per cent increase in the general rate each year for three years (including an estimated rate pegged limit of two per cent), with a cumulative impact of 25.9 per cent – to be retained permanently in council’s ...

Home-grown hero honoured

Australian Wallabies star Kane Douglas returned to his home town of Yamba for the naming of Yamba’s rugby field in his honour on Saturday. The former junior Buccaneer player spent time catching up with old mates and took time out to talk with young Yamba players. Prior to the formal unveiling, Clarence Valley mayor Jim Simmons addressed the large crowd which had gathered for the event. “Congratulations to Kane who represents the Buccaneers, Yamba and the entire Clarence Valley so ...

Approved: ‘Dongaville’, on the fringes of town

Clarence Valley Council has approved the construction of a 124-bed temporary workforce accommodation compound on a previously developed and approved 19-lot residential subdivision at 21 Challinor Street, Grafton. The development, which includes one four-bedroom module, 20 six-bedroom modules and 122 onsite parking spaces, will house the itinerant “workforce associated with the large infrastructure works in the region”. Consent was granted for the temporary development for four ...

Confidential business

At last week’s Clarence Valley Council meeting, councillors unanimously endorsed keeping discussions confidential, regarding the Grafton Community Centre and the sale of 1A Spring Street, South Grafton – which previously was the library’s headquarters before being vacated when the new library was built. Each of the items were discussed in a confidential session in concurrence with 10A 2 (c) of the Local Government Act: “The report contains information that would, if disclosed, confer a ...

New date for Harmony Day

The Biirrinda and Harwood Island Community Committee has announced a new date for its Harmony Day celebration: Saturday June 24. The event was set to take place on March 19, but was postponed due to rainy weather. “It looks like it’s going to be even bigger than the one in March was going to be,” says publicity officer Kathleen Werry. “The Gallery Foundation [Grafton Regional Gallery] was also unable to have its Harmony Day event, so they’ve teamed up with us to make one big ...

Maclean Sports Centre management nears resolution

Clarence Valley Council (CVC) has resolved to call tenders for the maintenance and operation of the Maclean Sports Centre. The decision, taken in a confidential session at last week’s council meeting, includes continuing the current temporary management of the centre by Valley Pool Services P/L at a cost of “$5,700 per month until such time that the successful tenderer takes occupation of the facility”. The decision was made in a confidential session because the report to council ...

Fundraiser to fight the Black Dog

In 2010, Kerry Priest of Yamba lost her brother Grant to suicide. Since then Kerry and her two daughters have set about to raise money for the Black Dog Institute [BDI]. The institute is a not-for-profit service that provides information on diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mood disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder. Each year the women host different events to raise money and awareness of mental health issues. This year the prize has been donated by the Angourie ...

Fundraiser reaches target

The Friends Who Care fundraiser which was held at the Grafton District Services Club (GDSC) on Saturday night was a huge success, with money raised going to the Grafton Base Hospital palliative care unit. Friends who Care organisers Denise Barnier and Rosemary Munro said that around 180 people, who attended the fun event, were dressed in wild party clothes and enjoyed dancing to the music of The McKenzie Band. “Local bush poet Bill Kearns also entertained the crowd on the night,” Ms ...

Disaster funds needed to fix damage

Wild weather at the end of March has left Clarence Valley Council with a damages bill of more than $2 million, but unlike its neighbours the council has received no offer of financial help from the state and federal governments. Councils to the north of the Clarence received funding through the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements to help their communities recover from flooding, but no such recovery funding has been offered to help pay for damage to public infrastructure in ...

Hey Smokey, where’re ya headed, mate?

It was March 1, 2006 when Ben Allmon, AKA Smokey, stepped onto the sand at Pottsville, just south of Tweed Heads. He was on a mission, one that seemed, well, stupid and ill-considered: Allmon embarked on a walk that mostly followed the east coast beaches to Sydney. He had no real support during the trek – he was literally on his own – and his preparation, despite talking about the idea for a year, was virtually non-existent: the 27-year-old musician left Pottsville without a map – ...