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Paddington to be sold

Greek Orthodox Community of NSW votes 55 per cent 'yes'

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Photo: SBS

17 March 2017

The members of the Greek Orthodox Community of NSW were called last Sunday to decide if the Community's building in Paddington was to be sold.

This building is regarded as the biggest asset of the GOC of NSW and this wasn't the first time an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) has been called to pose the same question.

Back in 2013, the state GOC had voiced an outstanding "No" to the sale of its "large and historic" building in the central Sydney suburb.

The atmosphere was very tense and boisterous as there were quite a few members disputing the proposal yet, with a majority of 55 per cent, the ballot closed in favour of the sale as revenues from refurbishment, restoration, and further utilisation of the building were not covering its expenses
The organisation's president Mr Harry Danalis said that the board "has to respect the outcome of the motion and the wishes of the membership".

"The board can now look to the future with trust and optimism".

"Our first goal now is to allocate the money from the sale towards a new facility or facilities to house and help realise the members' dreams, starting with a community old people's home," he added.

The committee concluded in its report that the Greek Orthodox Community of NSW is to receive $23 million by the end of November. The buyer has already transferred a deposit of $1,150,000 for the over 2,000 square metre Sydney landmark.

Voices from the opposition allege that the building's worth is estimated closer to $40 - 50 million and not the $23 million accepted, while several members have complained about the property not going to auction.

According to the board, the real estate agents had evaluated the building's worth to a maximum of $18 million and the $23 million was the highest and only legitimate offer from a trustworthy third party, made during the time the building was on sale.

The EGM was attended by 418 members. The vote was by ballot, 377 members voted in support of the motion for the sale of the building, while two invalid votes were found. Close to 40 more members left the room before the voting began.

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