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Batemans Bay: behind closed doors


With so many rumours flying around Batemans Bay it is hard to pin down what is true or false. The latest comes via the admission of the Mayor that the community did not want to see the Batemans Bay Mini Golf relocated from where it is located as the Mini Golf is an "icon" and a "tourism drawcard" that provides family activity all year round. MINI GOLF The Mayor now says that Council are going to remove the Mini Golf and then put them back after the new swimming centre is built. But where are they going to put them is the big question because the new "footprint" doesn't have space and the Council person at the Information Kiosk told me the Mini Golf had to go "because there was no longer any room for it there" and "The new facility will be the Gateway to Batemans Bay and the mini-golf doesn't fit in to the vision". But now we hear the Mayor has done a back flip saying that they "people are telling us loud and clear that they love the mini golf" with the mayor stating Council will "reinstate the Mini Golf back on the site if at all possible" and unconfirmed rumours are that Council will be buying out the mini-golf and running it themselves. Roads, rates, rubbish and mini golf. The Batemans Bay Community Hall is to be demolished A council staff member has advised those attending the recent forum groups held this week around the new aquatic centre that Council will be demolishing the Batemans Bay Community Centre once the Mackay Park facility is opened. This "brutal and conclusive" announcement has instilled a fear into those who are presently weighing up the replacement facilities being offered with the continued observation that the architects concept plans have no dimensions, do not reflect how the present hall is sued and offers nothing in the way of a commercial kitchen. This will no doubt cause the Meals on Wheels to find new premises and those who enjoy their community hall for dances, markets and community meetings. BATEMANS BAY Business assurity

Next we hear that there will be a three year action proposed by the new bridge builders to put in place a strategy to assure and support local Batemans Bay businesses in the transition form the old bridge to the new bridge. While this is welcome news to those worried by the transition and the long term consequences that will come from reduced through traffic many are now asking how the impact will be measured. There is a strong yet unstated response by those in actual business that nothing less than an accurate, confidential CBD wide business house survey be carried out at each milestone must be considered and this should be done by an independent auditor able to crunch the numbers of comparative turnover. Deep Water jetty and cruise boats Council have pretty much confirmed they have no intention of pursuing the deep water jetty option as cruise boats need substantial jettys to dock well beyond the capacity that could be justifiably afforded and provided by the NSW Port Authority, especially in light of Batemans Bay not being a port. In regards to the visiting cruise boats the question must be asked of what alternate docking provision is available for embarking and disembarking should the bar not be navigable to the passenger tenders. Having passengers tendered can present some issues as tendering can be dangerous in bad weather particularly when there are high winds. Tender boarding also involves steps and small openings impacting on passengers with limited mobility forcing those who can't disembark to stay onboard. This does offer the opportunity for the Batemans Bay Foreshore Committee to extend their scope beyond just the foreshore around the bridge on both sides of the Clyde and it is understood that a new Clyde River Foreshore Committee is being considered that would best represent all users of the Clyde River from Nelligen to Hanging Rock and Snapper Island inclusive of private property, tourism, fishing, oyster growing, houseboats, sailing, commercial such as the Marina and recreational. This independently chaired body could then advise all levels of Government on issues raised removing the undue influences and constraints that we currently see with the restricted Foreshore Committee. CBD Traffic - buses A senior council staff member has confirmed that buses coming into the CBD will all come down North Street and pick up / drop off at the existing bus stand and that the idea of a bus terminal over at the Mackay Park centre is off the table. Learn to swim 25m pool - soon to Open in North Street Locals in Batemans Bay would have seen the announcement in North Street of the new Learn to Swim facility being built to open soon. Eurobodalla Council staff have recently advised that $51 million is not enough to build the facility they plan and that various components will need to be dropped off. Maybe the 25m learn to swim pool might be dropped of from the aqautic centre to join the need to go into competition with the thermal pool being proposed for the new Coach House complex. It has already been mentioned by one staff officer that the gymnasium space, whilst there is no present demand, is added should there be future demand. With six other gyms in the town it has never been understood why Council would want to go into competition with other real estate providers other than to use their new pool as a means to attract gym members away from other establishments. So there you have it - the rumours, the statements and still no one is any wiser as the secret back room discussions continue that effectively keep the community and our councillors very much in the dark.


#Opinion

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