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 - firstname.lastname@example.org