Club continues fight for fair go as jetty plans drag on
THE Coffs Harbour Yacht Club has been given a reprieve on overdue rent but Commodore John Wait says the club has been paying too much for too long.
"We were promised a rent reduction two years ago and it didn't happen.
"We've been trying to get a reduction because we are a non profit club and a headquarters for about six or seven other sub-clubs who use our facilities regularly," Mr Wait said.
"Council has been charging us top market rent for years now.
"We should be paying about a quarter of what we're currently paying."
He says the club is in negotiations with Council to reduce their rent on a permanent basis.
The club currently has arrears of $20,939.82.
At Coffs Harbour City Council's recent meeting it was agreed to allow them to repay $11,000 over the next 11 months at a rate of $1,000 per month and write-off the remainder of the arrears of $9,939.82.
The situation is complicated by the uncertainty and delays with the Jetty Foreshore Revitalisation Project.
Mr Wait says the club's lease is only being extended on a yearly basis with foreshore plans yet to be confirmed.
Last month Coffs Harbour MP Gurmesh Singh travelled to Sydney seeking answers in relation to the long-awaited redevelopment project.
"Essentially it stands the same as May last year but by the end of month we will have an interim update and a full update by Easter," Mr Singh said in early February .
Speculation has included talk of a high rise development in the vicinity of the former Deep Sea Fishing Club.
"I have also heard talk about that," Mr Wait said.
"Plans for the jetty foreshore have been a real thorn in our side - it keeps getting put back and put back.
"They can't make their damn minds up - I think it's political myself."
Mr Wait has been a member of the club since it first began in 1963.
"The original clubhouse was built by club volunteers - I was one of them when I was a strapping young lad.
"I just don't think Council is looking after us properly."