Family waiting on decision to honour sporting son
A LOCAL sporting family will know tonight if a sporting field will be named in their son's honour.
Earlier this year Clarence Valley Council put on exhibition a proposal to name the Yamba No 2 field after current Wallaby squad member Kane Douglas. It will vote on the proposal at its meeting in Maclean today.
The Douglas family, which includes Gold Coast Titans prop Luke Douglas and Sydney Shute Shield player Jake Douglas is synonymous with local league and union.
Cr Sue Hughes moved a Notice of Motion in April to have the field named after the towering lock forward who last played for the Wallabies in the ill-fated 2015 World Cup final against the All Blacks.
To achieve the honour councillors will have to overturn the objections of the staff report which recommends against the proposal because it goes against the council's policy.
The basis of this opposition is the NSW Department of Primary Industries - Crown Lands division, do not support the naming of fields and structure after living people.
It in turn takes its lead from the Geographical Names Board of NSW, which advises on these matters.
The council has received seven submissions on this matter. Four are in favour, two oppose and one is non-committal and points out some errors in the proposal.
The NSW Government is one of the objectors, but there is also a local objector, Tess Salter, who describes Mr Douglas as a "wonderful person" and a "great rugby player, but wonders what would happen if future players achieved higher honours.
NTSCORP discussed the matter at its June meeting and the directors voted unanimously to support the proposal.
The directors noted the significant contribution Kane Douglas made to the Yaegl community.
The Aboriginal body included in its submission, an interest in renaming some parks and reserves with significant Yaegl names.
A non-committal submission from Doug Anderson said Cr Hughes had not consulted with the executive of the Yamba Rugby Club. He also pointed out the submission may have confused Mr Douglas's playing time in Ireland with having played for Ireland.
Councillors have voted to overturn these proposals, most recently with the resolution to rename a field in Junction Hill after respected athletics and sports coach Terry West.
The council also approved naming the Grafton Hockey Fields water based field after Olympic hockey gold medallist Brent Livermore.