Brakes puton $500,00playground
By SAMANTHA TURNBULL
SHOULD half a million dollars be spent on a playground? You decide.
That was the reasoning behind a Byron Shire Council decision to exhibit plans for the $500,000 Jarjum Playground at Clarks Beach, before ratepayers' money was allocated to the project.
Councillors voted last week against giving the Jarjum Playground Association $100,000 and is seeking approval for $200,000 from Crown Reserves.
Cr Ross Tucker said there were too many other important projects that deserved funding first.
"I have grave concerns about half a million dollars being spent on a playground when I look at other problems confronting Byron Bay," he said.
"There's traffic, parking issues ... those items are screaming at us and it's a matter of priorities."
However, despite the funding refusal, councillors voted to endorse plans for the playground which will be put on display for public comment.
Playground association spokeswoman Laurel Juddell said she was confident the community would support the plans, even though they were expensive.
"We could just buy equipment and plonk it on the ground, but that wouldn't be as satisfying. We had a preview of our design at the Byron Cinemas a couple of months ago and it was well-received, so we think it will be again," she said.
In the meantime, the association will continue fundraising on its own.
It has already raised $165,000 through a State Government grant, private donations and fundraising events.
What do you think?
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