The Wodonga Gold Cup public holiday has had its longest extension granted since the event's inception.
The full-day holiday is locked in until 2026 with this year's meeting part of the most recent extension granted three years ago.
It has been held in lieu of Melbourne Cup since 2014, but the education sector and parts of the business community have been in favour of returning to the early November timeslot.
The five-year extension gained the green light from the Victorian government this week following the requirement for council support in April which came on the casting vote of first-term mayor Kevin Poulton.
Cr Kat Bennett, who has opposed the holiday previously, was on leave of absence in April and Cr Poulton's predecessor Anna Speedie had also voted against the Gold Cup public holiday.
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The five-year extension was backed by Cr John Watson, Cr Graeme Simpfendorfer and Cr Poulton with an alternate option to align the holidays for the Wodonga and Albury Gold Cup meetings pushed by Cr Ron Mildren unable to gain support needed.
Two years earlier, council staff recommended the Gold Cup holiday be dumped before securing a short-term extension.
The Gold Cup was a COVID casualty last year, but enjoyed significant growth between 2016 and 2019 with 33,323 people attending the event, with an average yearly increase of 9.6 per cent.
Wodonga residents made up the biggest percentage of the 2019 crowd (59.3 per cent), followed by interstate (22 per cent) and other parts of Victoria (19 per cent).
Economic stimulus to Wodonga reached a four-year high of $3.23 million in 2019.
"It is a fantastic result for the race club," Business Wodonga chairman Graham Jenkin said.
"It gives them the certainty to build an event Wodonga really needs."
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