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No deal on Esplanade land transfer

SPECULATION about a land transfer from the Derwent Valley Council to the New Norfolk Rowing Club has been hosed down by both parties today (July 12). Following a stalemate at the June council meeting, it was today reported that a deal had been done.

However, in a statement issued late this afternoon, a council spokesperson said there was no decision or deal for the council to give away its ownership of the site on the New Norfolk Esplanade where the new rowing club was built several years ago. “Council has previously resolved to provide a lease or licence in place of transfer of title,” the spokesperson said.

At its June meeting, a majority of councillors voted down the recommendation of acting general manager Ron Sanderson, which was to provide the rowing club with a licence for the public land it occupies. The council spokesperson said no new agreements had been made since then.

New Norfolk Rowing Club spokesman Peter Nichols today confirmed there had been no new deal with the council. “The New Norfolk Rowing Club has not reached a deal, although that is our desire,” he said.

Speaking during public question time at last month’s council meeting, Mr Nichols had made clear his club’s dissatisfaction with the ownership issue being unresolved. The club is of the view that it had an understanding it would be granted the title to the land at the New Norfolk Esplanade on which it had built its new clubhouse but more recently the council has been offering a 50-year lease rather than complete ownership.

To that end, Mr Sanderson proposed to the June meeting that the council provide a final copy of the lease agreement to the club for signing. This recommendation was not accepted and the issue appears unresolved. Cr Phillip Bingley said it would be wrong if the rowing club was not given the land.

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