Parkland Tennis Club wants to close three of Birallee Park’s four tennis courts for use by the public, so they can be exclusively used by its players and Wodonga Middle Years College students.
The decision will be made by Wodonga councillors at Monday’s meeting, but council staff have recommended they support the club’s request.
A $5000 council grant was awarded to Parkland in March on the condition all four tennis courts stay open to the public, the club maintains the courts and Tennis Australia provides funding for a development.
The council money would be used to repair existing tennis court fencing and install of a new gate into the nearby Wodonga Middle Years College.
Parkland members wrote to the council in April with concerns they were stuck cleaning up the courts after use by others in the community.
According to the letter, the public have left litter on the courts, damaged the surface by wearing inappropriate shoes and caused damage to the nets.
“Concerns are raised regarding the potential damage to nets and the synthetic surfacing that will result in Parkland being financially responsible for repair costs and could render the courts unusable for play,” the report to councillors states.
“It is proposed that Parkland be placed on a three-year lease agreement for the exclusive use of the three synthetics courts including the ongoing responsibility for the maintenance of the courts.”
The tennis club recently learned Tennis Australia knocked back its request for funding, but told Wodonga Council that would not stop a proposed $100,000 upgrade of the courts using a club contribution.
Council staff commented that they were concerned the courts would not be developed to standard.
“There is concern regarding the current condition of the courts in that the funds available through the club will not be adequate enough to cover the cost of the redevelopment works,” the report stated.
“Additionally, the club may invest a significant amount of funds into a redevelopment that may not give them the longevity of tenure they are wanting.”
The meeting will be held Monday night at the Wodomga Council chambers, starting at 6pm.