Eurobodalla Shire Councillors voted to proceed with the final design of Batemans Bay's new aquatic and arts centre at the Tuesday, August 27, council meeting in Moruya.
Councillors Lindsay Brown, James Thomson, Maureen Nathan, Jack Tait and Rob Pollock voted for the motion, and councillors Anthony Mayne, Phil Constable and Pat McGinlay voted against (Mayor Liz Innes was absent).
A development application will now be lodged for determination by the NSW Government's Southern Regional Planning Panel.
A detailed design would be finalised prior to a tender process for the construction of the centre.
Cr Mayne said he liked the concept design, but wanted to "get the finances right" and defer the decision for a couple of weeks.
"I'm not confident I can fully articulate how we are going to make that gap up to the community we represent," he said.
"Any project like this has risk in it, and drift (in cost) ... (it's) the cart before the horse."
Cr Pollock disagreed.
"Until we go through this DA, and get a contract price quote, nobody will know exactly what we'e doing," he said.
He said a number of people were "preaching doom, conservatism, but until you have facts in front of you, delaying will not assist anyone ... you will go nowhere. We have reached the stage where this needs to happen".
Cr McGinlay also wanted more detail, saying the point of quantity surveying was to give a ballpark figure, plus or minus five per cent.
He said "to just ignore that and say, 'we don't know'," and not knowing how to fight the gap would be "fiscally irresponsible of me".
Cr Nathan denied the council was being secretive on final costing.
"I am very comfortable with where we are at at this stage, in this very prolonged process that would drive anyone in the private sector crazy," she said.
Residents Coral Anderson, Jeff de Jager and Maureen Searson expressed concerns about the development during public forum.
- READ MORE: What happened at the August 27 council meeting?
- Eurobodalla Shire Councillors consider final Mackay Park design
- Concept plans released for new Batemans Bay aquatic and arts centre
- PerfEx concerned Bay Community Centre might be lost to new Mackay Park complex
- Mackay Park Plan of Management on exhibition
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Take a look at how the August 27 council meeting unfolded here: