Following the determination of Council to sell the community Moruya Racecourse to Racing NSW access to the final sale price that was withheld from the community under "commercial in confidence" was deferred under section 78 of the GIPA Act until after the sale of Moruya Racecourse had settled. It has been established that, due to a third party objection against disclosure, deferred access could not be provided while third party review rights were pending.
Under section 54(7) of the GIPA Act, review rights are pending while an objector is entitled to apply for a review of the decision, or any review duly applied for is pending.
As Council did not receive an application for internal review of its decision(s) and has not been notified of any application for external review, the third party’s review rights have expired.
Council can now advise that the sale of Moruya Racecourse has now settled and, as such, is able to provide the information to which access was deferred being: the Valuation amount (market value of freehold interest) that has been revealed to be $650,000. The sale price of the Moruya Racecourse to Racing NSW of $1,150,000 Racing NSW, the state’s independent body responsible for thoroughbred racing approached Council to purchase the parcel of land at Donnelly Drive, Moruya.
The Moruya Jockey Club supported the proposal.
Council’s manager of property and commercial services Andrew Greenway said the proposed purchase was a part of Racing NSW $98.5M investment in racing across NSW.
“In making the offer to Council, Racing NSW has indicated the land would continue to be used indefinitely for the purpose of thoroughbred racing and training, with the land subject to a 50-year lease to the Moruya Jockey Club, who have given full support to the proposed sale,” Mr Greenway said.
“Currently the jockey club pay rent to Council, which is given back to the Moruya Racecourse Management Committee for reinvestment at the racecourse.
“A significant portion of the existing buildings and improvements at the racecourse were provided by Racing NSW grants. The purchase of the racecourse is part of their plans for further investment.”
Owners of the adjacent freehold dwellings would continue to have right of carriageway access via Donnelly Drive, and Racing NSW has confirmed it does not object to St John’s Ambulance use of a building at the racecourse under existing conditions. Questions continue around Council's management of the probity plan required to carry out this sale.
Further reading: The Moruya Racecourse Sale - as clear as mud