Service reductions at the CVRD’s aquatic centre and sports centre will not occur in 2018. File photo.

2017 surplus will cushion CVRD recreation facilities from operational challenges

The recreation department discovered a $488,000 surplus carry-over from its 2017 financials

Worries over service reductions at the Comox Valley Regional District’s recreational facilities have been mitigated.

On Feb. 6, Jennifer Zbinden, the senior manager of the CVRD’s recreation facilities, presented the recreation department’s five-year financial plan to the CVRD’s sports centre commission.

The plan highlighted possible service reductions and fee increases to the CVRD’s aquatic centre and sports centre. The cuts were proposed to offset operational challenges imposed by new safety regulations and personnel requirements in B.C.

Read More: Service cuts, increased fees for recreational facilities under discussion

Possibilities considered included later opening and earlier closing hours at the aquatic centre and hockey rink, reduced summer hours, and closures of certain facilities during non-peak times and Christmas and spring breaks.

But another presentation at the Feb. 20 sports centre commission meeting alleviated those concerns.

According to Zbinden, a higher-than-anticipated surplus carry-over from 2017, as well as lesser-than-expected debt servicing costs and some debt retirement, resulted in additional funds available to offset the challenges that were discussed two weeks prior.

“The new info since the Feb. 6 meeting is that the CVRD can provide a more accurate estimate of the 2017 year-end surplus, and this has been identified at approximately $488,000,” she told the commission on Feb. 20.

“The $488,000 will help offset the anticipated cost of regulatory changes and safety audit reviews.”

However, she acknowledged that a review of the recreation facilities’ user fees will be undertaken this spring. Fees could possibly increase at the CVRD’s recreation facilities next fall.

“Staff will report back to the commission in the spring with recommendations to updates to fees and charges,” she said.

Zbinden said the recreation department’s financial plan will maintain the 2017 tax requisition of $4,520,251 for 2018. One of the options brought up on Feb. 6 had been to increase the tax requisition.

Cumberland director Gwynn Sproule said she was pleased with the surplus but was surprised by its amount and where it came from.

“I’m very heartened to see we found a way through this impasse. It was pretty shocking news we got at the last meeting that we might have to reduce services, especially during the holidays,” she said at the meeting.

“But this surplus, where did it come from? It was a big surprise to me.”

Zbinden replied that the department’s year-end budgeting process comes to an end in late January and that the processing was perhaps not completed as of first reporting.

Just Posted

Vanier basketball star earns scholarship with University of Saskatchewan Huskies

Levi Timmermans was the Towhees’ leading scorer and MVP this season, as well as an Island all-star

Hospice care to remain at The Views until purpose-built location is completed in 2020

The four community hospice beds at The Views facility at the St.… Continue reading

Courtenay man arrested after fleeing police twice

A 33-year-old Courtenay man is facing charges including obstructing a police officer… Continue reading

Compass Adventure sails into tourism market

The Comox-based sailing school is offering two-hour guided tours for sailing newbies

Lake Trail to be seismically upgraded

The project is a partial replacement that will ensure the entire school will be seismically safer

Monster trucks bring the noise at Black Creek’s Saratoga Speedway (video)

Thousands of racing fans were in Black Creek on Saturday and Sunday… Continue reading

B.C. launches plan to tackle doctor shortage, emergency room congestion

John Horgan aims to set up regional primary care networks in a ‘team-based’ approach

Vancouver, Squamish pipeline challenges dismissed by court in B.C.

Justice Christopher Grauer ruled the province’s decision to issue the certificate was reasonable

Early learning programs for Indigenous kids get $30M boost

B.C. government to help expand Aboriginal Head Start Association programs with three-year funding

Ferry sailing cancelled after ship’s second officer falls ill

Coastal Inspiration’s 8:15 p.m. sailing to Nanaimo on Tuesday cancelled, passengers to be compensated

B.C. man recounts intense rescue of couple caught in mudslide

Something told Dan Anderson to go back to the scene of a major mudslide on the long weekend.

Comox Valley schools project student enrolment increase

Council briefs: School district board meeting, May 22

The priciest home for sale in Canada: A $38M Vancouver penthouse

Canada’s luxury real estate: The top 10 most expensive properties for sale right now

9 temperature records broken across B.C. as warm weather continues

Clearwater, Golden, Williams Lake, Malahat a few of the cities that broke records Wednesday

Most Read