Wednesday, September 21, 2011

City of WL Statement Regarding CMRC Provision Of Fitness Programs

From the City of Williams Lake:

The City of Williams Lake has been in communication with Concrete Fitness for the past six months or more, responding to Concrete Fitness’ request for detailed information regarding the finances and various business records related to the operation of the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex (CMRC).

Subsequently, the owners of Concrete Fitness wrote to the City, expressing concerns with costs of CMRC operations, levels of subsidy, and the range of fitness programming offered to the public. The basis of these concerns are that the Complex is competing unfairly with private fitness operators in the community due to the subsidy that is provided through property taxation.

More recently, Concrete Fitness has presented the City and CRD, through the Central Cariboo Joint Committee, with a letter and petition that requests a review of the programs offered at the CMRC in relation to services offered by the private sector. The letter further requests that the CMRC refrain from offering adult fitness programs (yoga, pilates, etc.) that are in direct competition with private fitness establishments.

They have also requested that the gym facility not be expanded or improved.

The CMRC has provided a range of fitness programs and a modest fitness facility for many years. Fees are consistent with other communities in the province with a recognition that municipal fitness facilities are generally intended to provide affordable amenities and services for a range of users. Staff has been challenged by the Joint Committee over the years to maximize revenues at the CMRC to offset operating costs and reduce the level of subsidy required from taxpayers. For the most part, this has been achieved by offering a range of quality fitness programs, thus increasing the number of drop-in and fitness pass holders. As a result of this effort over the past number of years, the CMRC has gone from recovering approximately 30% of operating costs to almost 50%.

The City has received some very compelling and passionate feedback from both the private fitness sector as well as residents who support the programs offered at the CMRC. The question of providing fitness facilities and services at the CMRC is one of public policy and the elected representatives of the City and CRD will have to consider the interests of the community at large in addressing the requests of Concrete Fitness and the other signatories to the petition,” says Mayor Kerry Cook. “In the meantime, I am confident that we will find resolution to this matter that is in the best interest of the community”.

The Central Cariboo Joint Committee will be considering the Concrete Fitness request and petition at the next regularly scheduled meeting on October 26, 2011 at 5:00 pm at City Hall in the Rick Hansen Boardroom (old Committee Room #1)

For more information please contact:

Brian Carruthers - Chief Administrative Officer
The City of Williams Lake
Ph: 250 392-1763
Email -


Brian said...

Everyone needs to ask themselves this. What is needed and what is wanted by the community? What percentage of the community partake in the fitness classes offered by the city complex? There are many people who choose different recreational activities, like boxing ,waterskiing, fishing hiking ect.The list goes on and on. How as a community should we decide what to subsidize as recreation?How does the city pick these programs? All the taxpayers pay for them yet only a small percentage use them.Everyone needs food and shelter. The city should open a grocery store and sell food at a 50% loss. It would benifit the whole community. Myself and many others choose different recreation that is not offered by the city.How about you pay for half of our activities also. It seems only fair.

Jim said...

Concrete sinks even lower...yikes!

Jenda said...

What a self-serving, low brow attempt motivated by nothing but money this is. To even try and disguise it as concern for the greater good of the community is a complete and utter joke.
Concrete knew exactly what they were getting into when they opened and if they didn't perhaps they should have spent some time on a business plan.
Should we also shut down public education? Public medical? etc, etc... These are available privately....these don't return ANY revenue. Many people don't use these at all. Using your argument I'm sure you're in favor of scrapping these as well.

Anonymous said...

I get where Concrete is coming from. But, at the same time, I just registered for a dance class at the CRMC. I took the time to look into attending the Maureen Saunders school of Dance, but felt that the commitment and cost was too much and that the class offered by CRMC suited my needs better. I've also taken yoga classes with CRMC, and though I appreciate Satya Yoga Studio, I cannot afford their classes. By registering for yoga through CRMC, however, I am fully aware that I am NOT receiving the same services - the facilities are not nearly as nice as Satya's, the instructors are (possibly) not as qualified, nor are the options on styles of yoga available. So, I'm paying for what I get. I would absolutely love to take some spinning or zumba classes at Concrete, but I can't justify a full-on membership to the gym just to do so. I also don't want to go to a gym. If programs at Concrete were accessible and affordable at a similar level (keeping in mind the facility and instructor differences), then I would gladly go to Concrete. But, we can't be comparing apples to oranges here by saying one fitness class is the same as another.

Anonymous said...

Let's close the library too!! I'm sure bookstores, and every other place that sells books in town, can't survive with these folks giving their books away for (gasp!) FREE! Besides... all that stuff is available on the internet so why should I as a taxpayer pay for something I don't use??

Sounds kind of ridiculous doesn't it??!!

Anonymous said...

Editor's Note: Edited for legal reasons. Please watch what you say...

I was asked by Mr. Hoelzer to sign his petition a few months back.

With a minimal amount of research I was able to find BIG descrepancies in what Mr. Hoelzer was saying and what I was able to verify as facts.

Mr. Hoelzer is entitled to his opinion, and I respect that,

Personally I find the complex actually helps my business and brings new client to my business all the time. People outgrow the basic offerings there and look for the next step.

Perhaps Mr. Hoelzer should do what I did and focus on offering a product that capitalizes on missing needs/wants, and enhances what is available publically. This is certainly what I designed my business plan around and to date it has worked every well.

At the end of the day I'm very glad I did my homework and that I wasn't drawn into this mess.