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Labor matches $6.5m Grafton waterfront promise

Geoff Helisma |

The Labor Party has matched the Coalition’s $6.5million election promise to redevelop Grafton’s riverfront between Queen Street and the Grafton Bridge.

Clarence Valley Council (CVC) adopted the concept for the Grafton Waterfront Precinct Plan (GWPP) in 2011.

Meanwhile, at the February CVC meeting, councillors authorised general manager Ashley Lindsay to purchase properties (listed in a confidential document) needed to complete the GWPP.

Councillors previously allocated “up to $2million from Section 94A funds” towards the project at its August 2018 meeting.

Once purchased, the land will be reclassified as “community” land.

Much like the concept spruiked by incumbent Nationals MP Kevin Hogan, Labor’s media release focuses on tourism potential: “The council’s plan recognises the untapped potential of the Clarence River to attract tourists and for Grafton to become a ‘River City’ destination.

“Grafton is already well known as the Jacaranda City, but not all visitors are aware of its prime waterfront location.

“It was the original trading capital of the Clarence River and is the ideal place for visitors to begin their exploration of the region.

“The redevelopment will not only serve the interests of visitors, but provide a great amenity for residents and an economic boost to businesses and the local economy.

“The council plan, adopted in 2011, was funded by a Federal Tourism Quality program launched under Labor and scrapped by the Abbott Government.”