VANDALS STRIKE TOURISM CENTRE

By EMMA CORNFORD

RATEPAYERS face a repair bill of thousands of dollars after lights surrounding the Clarence River Tourism Centre at South Grafton were destroyed by vandals.

Clarence Valley Council open spaces manager Nigel Greenup said he was unsure exactly when the vandalism occurred, but suspected it was during the weekend or on Monday night.

"We were advised what had happened by staff (on Tuesday) and the matter has been reported to police," Mr Greenup said.

"Now we will have to look at suitable replacement lights ... and I would expect that to cost several thousand dollars."

Every light surrounding the lake at the tourism centre was destroyed in the attack.

The lights at the tourism centre are not the first to have been smashed by vandals in recent months ? a few months ago lights at See Park were also destroyed.

"It's a real concern for council because we only have a limited budget and a large portion of it goes towards replacing senseless damage to public property," Mr Greenup said.

"At the end of the day it's community money which will have to be used to fix these and there are ... other things around the Valley which are crying out for funding, but the community will miss out because of vandalism like this."

Mr Greenup encouraged any members of the public with information to contact police.

"I'd really encourage the community to take a stand on this because at the end of the day it's public money having to be used to replace what's been destroyed by some reckless and senseless individuals.

"Somebody might think they destory public property at a whim, but we will certainly take action to the full extent of the law against the culprits."



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