NSSRC Non-Resident Fees Working Group

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The staff report on the Feb 28th Council agenda sets out some history about the funding of the North Simcoe Sports and Recreation Centre, along with our plan to form a working group with the stakeholders who will be impacted by the non-resident fees.

Update Feb 29th: https://www.midland.ca/en/news/council-approves-fees-review-process-for-non-resident-fees-at-nssrc.aspx

Local media coverage of the council meeting discussion: https://www.midlandtoday.ca/local-news/midland-to-invite-north-simcoe-groups-to-table-for-nssrc-fee-talks-8376490


The recommendation reads “Council directs staff to establish a working group to create a North Simcoe Sports and Recreation Centre funding strategy that 1) encourages youth participation in sport and 2) reduces the annual tax burden placed on Midland property owners for the operation, maintenance and replacement needs of the North Simcoe Sports and Recreation Centre.”

Midland provides a taxation subsidy of approximately $1.8 million annually (2024 Budget) to the operation, maintenance, and rehabilitation of this facility.

Tiny Township has provided a financial contribution of $23,500 to the NSSRC for several years with no formal agreement in place but has discontinued said payment as of 2024.

Tay Township provided a one-time financial contribution of $25,000 to the NSSRC when it was upgraded in 2004. To date, staff are not aware of any other financial contributions since that time.

Springwater Township and the Town of Penetanguishene have not, and do not contribute financially to this facility as they both have facilities providing similar services.

The overall financial impact on the Town is dependent upon which method of cost recovery (see report)

As a point of reference, the average cost of the NSSRC per taxable property in Midland is approximately $240.

The Town continues to investigate ways to reduce the tax burden placed on Midland property owners for services provided to North Simcoe. To better understand the needs of our user groups staff are proposing that a working group be established to ensure the sustainability of recreational services for all North Simcoe residents.

I support this approach and always prefer to make changes “with” the community and not “to” the community.

If this subject matter interests you, I encourage you to review the staff report that will inform Council’s discussion next Wednesday, where I hope to see this working group approach approved.

Click here to view the report.

Local news coverage: https://barrie.ctvnews.ca/controversy-brews-as-midland-introduces-non-resident-fee-for-rec-centre-1.6756962

5 Comments

  1. What is this “working group” you talk about? Is this to be like the “citizens committee” that I pitched to you some time back on a different topic? This would be an ideal opportunity to try out this kind of committee to deal with this hot-potato issue.

    • It’s going to be a group consisting of staff and reps from the impacted organizations. So yes it’s citizens but ones that have a direct stake in how this gets implemented. It’s just like the parking committee where we work with the stakeholders. This will get fleshed out at the meeting next week.

  2. working groups are just fine, but unless they identify the current day problems first,
    they are wasting their time, what is the problem, building losing money, not being used
    enough, maintenance reserve low etc. the building is of an age, repairs are needed. Sports alone is only one of many revenue activities that can raise money, home show, concerts, train or car shows etc. once we clear the air, we need a Professional Event person to run all our money making buildings and events.

    • The scope of this group will be about the implementation of the non-resident fees (not management consulting about operations / finance). What you and Martin suggest is a definitely a good idea but would be an entirely different animal and is the kind of work that management consultants can lead with the community as we do have some great talent among our residents. Although it is a bit dated now, we spent the time and money on KPMG to do this kind of work for the entire organization (Town of Midland) and some recommendations were actioned but many were not – including non resident fees. So the question is, if we pay for good advice, and don’t take it, why waste time and money to get it in the first place. I’d support a refreshed review of town operations from a management consultant lens, but with the turnover of senior staff and the experience that is coming on board this term, I’d rather give our internal leadership a chance to reflect on the organization and recommend changes before paying someone else to tell us largely the same information. The long and short of it, I don’t see engaging with the stakeholders as a waste of time. The building will always lose money and the focus now is how to reduce how much we lose for this “greater good” asset that serves people’s physical, social and mental health needs. The answer seems simple to me. The people who use it should help pay for it. Our neighbouring townships should enter into funding agreements if they truly value this asset.

      • Yes I can agree, but is the building run efficiently, like the running costs, overall, once we are sure we are, than select the activities that give us income, sports with or without ice, , trade shows, musical events. weddings, meetings, big or small, flower shows, etc. we may need a rental agent and on and on it goes.

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