AH chooses pay-by-donation for rec programs
|By Lisa Gervais - Editor | June 28, 2018
It looks as though people wishing to drop-in to recreation programs at Algonquin Highlands facilities can do so by donation.
Councillors overwhelmingly preferred this option to a drop-in fee of $2. Council looked at recreational programming fees and development and a new recreational program development manual at their June 21 meeting. They are now notifying the public of proposed amendments to their fees and charges bylaw that will come to the July 19 meeting. The draft bylaw is available for review at algonquinhighlands.ca. Coun.
Lisa Barry supported the donation, versus $2 dropin fee, calling it “a more inclusive option.” Coun. Brian Lynch agreed, saying if you have three children, the price is $6 and “those programs aren’t set up as money-makers.”
Coun. Liz Danielsen also agreed with fee by donation. Coun. Marlene Kyle said she was okay with a drop-in free since fees are so low anyway. She added that her concern with donations is that they are not the deciding factor in whether a program is deemed a success or not. Kyle has been calling for fee consistency across the township for some time. “Hopefully this puts to rest our ongoing fee conundrum,” Mayor Carol Moffatt said. Referring to the new manual, Kyle said there will be a fear of the unknown initially but residents and ratepayers would overcome that.
Some of the changes include penalties if someone doesn’t show up for a swim program. Now, they will only get back 60 per cent of their money if they cancel with more than seven days notice and 40 per cent if they give less than seven days. Chris Card, manager of parks, recreation and trails, said staff time is still used even when people pull out of programs at the last minute. He added the refund policy is consistent with what is charged for the Haliburton Highlands Water Trails.
LISA GERVAIS is the editor for The Highlander.