A Lismore councillor is pushing for the re-opening of the Lismore Lake community pool at South Lismore.
Cr Greg Bennett has lodged a notice of motion for tomorrow’s council meeting calling for a report to determine the costs of repairing or replacing the pool.
His motion asks that any decision ‘to sell, reclassify or re-zone the land on which the pool is located, or to demolish the pool, be deferred.
In support of the motion, Cr Bennett notes that the pool at South Lismore was ‘loved and used by many in our community’.
‘I note that this council’s term will most likely end in September. After this date a new council will form and it may have very different priorities,’ he said.
‘I do not believe that in the final months of this council that it has the moral right to demolish or sell off an icon like the Lismore Lake free pool.
‘Surely this should be a decision for the future council.
‘The arguments around not being able to run a free pool are clearly nonsense because if they were true council would not be able to run the Lake Pool’s sister at Nimbin which is fully operational and well patronized.
‘I believe that council should at least investigate the possibility of restoration so an informed decision can be made before deciding the pool’s final fate.’
In comments to the notice of motion, the council’s assets manager Scott Turner said the council had closed the pool in 2011 as a result of an assessment of the costs to rectify workplace health and safety issues at the site, and to address safety issues raised by an audit by Royal Life Saving .
‘The necessary works would have been regarded as an upgrade and triggered a need to provide life guard supervision at the venue whilst open to the public,’ Mr Turner said.
Mr Turner said a similar audit was carried out on the Nimbin pool and while issues were identified, they were addressed.
‘These issues were of a similar nature but did not require the substantive amount of work that would be required at South Lismore,’ Mr Turner said.
‘As such, the issues around upgrade of the facility and therefore supervision (or lack thereof) did not arise.
‘These issues will arise if and when council has to undertake major upgrade works at Nimbin and were canvassed with council at a workshop in February 2015.’
Mr Turner said cost estimates for the pool at South Lismore were provided in 2011, but would have to be redone if the council chose to support Cr Bennett’s notice of motion.
The council meets on Tuesday from 6pm at the council chambers in Goonellabah.