The City of White Rock has given Peace Arch Curling Club some rent relief as a result of the pandemic – but significantly less than the club was asking for.
In an online delegation to council on Nov. 9, club treasurer Michelle MacKinnon, along with club president Terry Peel, had requested rent relief of $33,000, to offset lost revenues and increased costs resulting from the closure last March of the club’s leased space in the Centre for Active Living.
But council decided at its Dec. 7 online meeting to follow city financial services director Colleen Ponzini’s recommendation that the club not be reimbursed for lost revenues – in keeping with established city policy.
Council did vote unanimously, however, for a $13,000 relief grant for the club, which is currently shut down for a second time due to provincial health orders on indoor sport activities issued in November.
The grant recognizes increased costs due to unplanned maintenance work at the facility done by the city during the first pandemic shutdown, Ponzini said.
“The city hasn’t reimbursed anybody for lost revenues of any type,” she told council.
“To be consistent with the type of grant that was provided to other organizations who are lessees of city facilities it’s recommended that the $13,000 – which relates to increased costs that the PAC shares with us – that that be the portion that’s covered,” Ponzini said.
“While it is arguable that the PACC does benefit from the maintenance, the work was done without their input and staff believe it is reasonable to alleviate the organization of these unexpected costs during the pandemic,” Ponzini noted in her written report to council.
Ponzini said staff had discussed the recommendations with PACC.
“It does fall short of their request but they’ve indicated that it (would be) appreciated,” she said.