Metchosin gives blessing to rec centre weight room

Council voted to endorse the weight room expansion more than a year after the project was completed.

In what might be a thaw in relations between Metchosin and West Shore Parks and Recreation, council voted to endorse the weight room expansion more than a year after the project was completed.

Metchosin council didn’t back the $2.1 million gym expansion at the West Shore rec centre, but it didn’t block it either after gaining an exemption from being fiscally responsible for the project.

The recreation centre netted a $724,900 grant from the federal government and borrowed $1 million to fund the expansion.

When this year’s recreation centre budget first crossed Metchosin’s council table, council did not approve it and asked for clarity as to how Metchosin’s financial contributions are spent.

After being sent more information from West Shore recreation, Metchosin Mayor John Ranns said he was still not satisfied with the numbers, but explained, “We are going to end up paying out for this whether we like it or not.”

“All I can think of is to throw our hands up and say we’ll be participants,” Ranns said. “I am going to vote for this because they have beaten me down. The figures don’t add up, they don’t jive, but I am used to it, it’s business as usual.”

Coun. Moralea Milne, who sits on the West Shore recreation board, explained when the revamped weight room and new fitness studio start to generate revenue, Metchosin would not be eligible to a share of that income and may have to contribute more tax dollars to the rec centre.

“As long as the debt services are being paid I doubt they will ever make money on that fitness centre,” Ranns said.

“I am tired of hearing this fight, year after year,” noted Coun. Larry Tremblay.

During public participation at the council meeting last week, a Metchosin resident told council he works out in the weightroom weekly and appreciates his tax dollars being used for the project.

Council passed the West Shore Parks and Recreation budget.


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