Unified approach for Clarence Valley Sports Council

SPORTS COUNCILS: If proposed changes are implemented at next week's council meeting the Clarence Valley Sports Council and Lower Clarence Sports Council will be no more.

Instead the councils will be replaced by two individual committees who share the same constitution. The committees will still have individual funding pools of $35,000 which sporting clubs are able to apply for grants from.

The unification of the two bodies under the one constitution was a compromise reached by council after both sports councils rejected previously proposed alteration.

The original proposal by the Clarence Valley Council was to amalgamate the existing sports councils into one body with a $70,000 fund to distribute among sporting communities.

But the idea was rejected based on logistical issues including the travel between meeting locations.

The new proposal was reached at Tuesday's Coporate, Governance and Works Committee Meeting and will be potentially adopted at next week's Ordinary Council Meeting.

According to Clarence Valley Council mayor Richie Williamson the new proposal adds up to a more unified sporting Valley.

"I think the discussions were really about two committees which we have now all coming under the same constitution and meeting on the same day but at different times in Grafton and Maclean," he said.

"Each will have the same amount of money they have now, that will remain as two separate figures that can be accessed by each committee.

"Both committees will continue to work under their current constitutions as the constitution won't change until the September council election. But it is the intent to have one sports committee constitution that both will work under."

If the proposal is adopted sports councils will now meet quarterly on the same day, with one meeting in Grafton and one in Maclean, and host one super meeting between the two committees annually with the meeting to alternate location each year.

"I think it will increase efficiency in council but still achieve the funding goals they have always set out to achieve," Williamson said. "I did struggle to find how a single entity would operate in this case simply because the number of sports that use the fields are very diverse."

Lower Clarence Sports Committee member Hariet Woodrow, who was among the members which voted the original decision out, was pleased with the new idea council had reached.

"It is good that they are maintaining the independence of the two committees," Woodrow said.

"Having one sports council was just not going to work. To host alternate meetings no one would go to the one that isn't in their town.

"So long as they maintain the current objectives of the sports council then we have no problem."

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