Raising money not much fun
By MARY MANN
MONEY does not grow on trees which is why Ballina Shire Council is looking at selling off some of its parks and reserves to finance play equipment elsewhere in the shire.
The council has adopted a new play equipment installation program, giving a list of priorities for play equipment on the council's parks and reserves.
But a council staff report states money for the equipment is limited, and that alternative sources need to be considered.
After spending the past few months successfully battling council against a proposal to move the town's rural fire service shed to Ocean Breeze Reserve, Lennox Head resident Allison Goodman has her fingers crossed it will not be sold.
"Hopefully the council has seen how important the Ocean Breeze park is to the community," she said.
Ocean Breeze Reserve is not identified as a priority for play equipment in the program, but Ms Goodman said residents would continue to push for equipment such as a playground or football goals.
On the other side of the coin, East Ballina mum Sara Bishop was 'absolutely stoked' to see Prospect Lake Reserve near her home was high on the program's priority list.
She has been campaigning for a playground at the reserve, backed by Ballina MP Don Page.
"It's important for families to take their children to the park for outdoor fun," she said.
Ms Bishop is hopeful the play equipment will be installed by Christmas.
Meanwhile, Ballina mum Cherie Stroud is collecting signatures on a petition for the council to build a fence around the playground at Fawcett Park, beside the Richmond River.
View the program at www.ballina.nsw.gov.au.