Is Ulmarra still being ignored?
THE grass might be mown, but people of Ulmarra are still waiting for their little town to receive its share of the Clarence Valley Council budget.
On April 22, The Daily Examiner published an article on how the once-pretty riverside village had deteriorated into a state of disrepair, including overgrown verges and traffic islands, cracked footpaths and an ill-maintained council building for all who pass through on the Pacific Highway to see.
Eight days later, two Council tractors could be seen mowing the grass along the highway – but Ulmarra business owner Col Wilcox said the improvements stopped there.
“What they didn’t mow they slashed down,” Mr Wilcox said.
“The gardens around the speed signs were slashed and poisoned, which was not quite what we had in mind.
“They used to be very nicely kept little gardens (prior to council amalgamations). It’s dead wasteland now.”
Mr Wilcox said nothing had yet been done to repair the village’s many cracked footpaths, highlighted with pink spray paint by council workers, nor had anything changed at the CVC-owned property on the corner of the highway and Coldstream Street – a building Mr Wilcox described as an “eyesore”.
“My thought is that the people of Ulmarra do not have a representative in Council,” Mr Wilcox said. “That would appear to be leaving us out in the cold. We have 7000 ratepayers in Ulmarra – when are we going to get our share?”
However, CVC Mayor Richie Williamson said Council received correspondence in response to the last Daily Examiner story in which Ulmarra residents expressed their satisfaction with the state of their town. “We received a number of emails of support for the maintenance that has been carried out in Ulmarra,” he said.
Cr Williamson said CVC’s nine councillors were there to represent the Valley as “a whole”. “We don’t look at wards or areas,” he said.
On the topic of footpaths, Cr Williamson said Ulmarra’s had joined a “very long list” of others across the Clarence Valley requiring maintenance.
“The list is far longer than resources that we have to put into footpaths.”
Meanwhile, Cr Williamson said discussions were continuing with the Rural Fire Service regarding the highway/Coldstream Street site.
He said CVC was planning a councillor tour of Ulmarra at a date to be fixed.