Wait almost over for forgotten Corindi residents

AFTER 13 years of waiting Corindi Beach residents are about to get major upgrades to facilities, thanks to the efforts of the recently incorporated Community Group.

Section 94 funds amounting to $860,000 from developers, have sat untouched since a 1995 Ulmarra Shire Council plan to upgrade the far northern beaches village was approved.

And despite Coffs Harbour City Council swallowing up the Corindi area in 2004 in a local government restructure, no funds had been allocated with many residents fearing they had been forgotten.

The Corindi Community Group picked up the baton and successfully lobbied the council into looking at where these funds could best go. A recent council survey, prompted by local residents, produced a staggering 277 responses.

“It shows how strong the feelings are for this community,” said Community Group chairperson Sue Ashley.

About 80 people attended a meeting in the community hall on Wednesday evening to hear council officials announce the results of the survey and talk about future plans.

One notable absentee though was a representative of the Department of Lands, invited, but declining to make an appearance.

The move clearly frustrated council community officers, who have been working hard to overcome issues surrounding Lands' ownership of key areas in the village.

Residents were informed that while they voted for work to begin on upgrading the hall, the skatepark and the sportsgrounds, council's hands were tied.

Negotiations between council and Lands had broken down and locals were told a move was underway to approach the Minister, Tony Kelly, directly to resolve the impasse.

Council will begin costings to complete a village footpath-cycleway immediately and work will also commence to identify a playground upgrade, using funds from the S94 contributions.

“We're delighted to have got this far,” said Community Group secretary Barbara Robson.

“There is of course, some way to go before we actually see these improvements, but to get council to this stage is a major step forward.”

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