Beaver Valley is no longer willing to cost share in regional recreation which means the price to play pickleball, swim or maybe join a yoga class in the new year will be considerably more expensive for valley residents after the current agreement expires Dec. 31.
“The city has received considerable feedback regarding Beaver Valley’s decision not to renew the Recreation Cost Sharing Agreement,” explained David Perehudoff, Trail’s chief administrative officer (CAO) during Monday night council. “It would seem as though there is significant concern coming from the residents of Beaver Valley who are impacted.”
In response to the growing concern from those residents who regularly use Trail facilities, council agreed to extend the Trail Residency Program (TRP) on a month-to-month basis with the caveat that Beaver Valley Parks and Recreation show a willingness to reconsider their position and renegotiate the agreement.
“The city is more than willing to enter into negotiations with Beaver Valley Parks and Recreation if there is interest in renewing,” said Perehudoff.
Until an agreement is considered, council gave three readings to amend the Trail recreation fee bylaw which excludes the Beaver Valley communities and now defines “resident” as an individual from the City of Trail, Village of Warfield or Electoral Area B.
“Adoption will be held in abeyance if there are discussions associated with renewing the agreement,” explained Perehudoff. “Otherwise council can adopt the bylaw and BV residents will be subject to higher rates (effective Jan. 1).”
Players in the Greater Trail Minor hockey who do not have a residency card and reside in Rossland, Fruitvale, Montrose or Area A, will continue to receive a free sport pass for minor hockey.
Earlier this month, Fruitvale, Montrose and Electoral Area A ended a five-year agreement with the city citing a lack of information of facility use and no formal request for renegotiation, leaving the Trail, the primary service provider, on the hook for an immediate revenue loss of more than $200,000.
Currently, there are 2,850 registered TRP card holders in the Beaver Valley communities, who comprise 20 per cent (2011) of people participating in regular Trail parks and recreation programs.
In a 2012 letter to the city, John MacLean, CAO for the regional district requested the number of TRP cards issued each year, how often the card-holders access Trail recreation facilities and programs and what, if any, promotional activities the city has undertaken to inform Beaver Valley residents of the programs and services available to them.
Trisha Davison, the city’s director of parks and recreation, submitted information compiled since the TRP program began in 2009 but could supply only numbers based on registered programs and memberships because drop-in statistics are not tracked.