Ravensong Aquatic Club head coach Byron Trajan wants pool fees at Ravensong Aquatics Centre to be inline with other pools on Vancouver Island. — File photo

Club wants its Ravensong pool fees reduced

Coach says compared to other centres, the Qualicum pool’s rates are significantly higher

A local swim club is finding the fees charged to use the Ravensong Aquatic Centre are more expensive compared to other swimming facilities on Vancouver Island.

Byron Trajan, head coach of the Ravensong Aquatic Club, has requested a reduced fee from the District 69 Recreation Commission.

At present, the club’s team, the Ravensong Breakers, has 41 members. It’s a small club, said Trajan, with members coming from various areas in the Regional District of Nanaimo, from Nanoose Bay to Bowser.

Trajan informed the commission that local swimmers and families pay “significantly higher pool rental fees than other swim clubs on the Island.”

Currently, the club is charged about $15 per lane per hour, which Trajan estimates to be around $37,000 in annual fees it has to cover for the year.

At other swimming facilities, such as the Nanaimo Aquatic Centre, the fee is $10.86 per lane, while at the Comox Valley Aquatic Centre the charge is $12.65 per lane.

“Our Ravensong pool is a fantastic facility, but it is significantly more expensive for RDN user groups at $15 per lane each hour,” Trajan said in his letter to the commission.

“Despite fundraising efforts throughout the season, our high pool costs and subsequent club fees are discouraging new members from joining the club,” he said.

Trajan said the fees are leading families to opt for fewer swim meets and limiting other RDN activities their children can attend due to the high cost.

Trajan asked the commission to adjust the lane fees to bring them more in line with other pools on the Island.

“We want to make our club financially accessible to as many of our youth in the RDN as possible,” he said.

Dean Banman, RDN manager of recreation services, said the RDN has had a good relationship with the swim club. He said staff checked the Ravensong rate and compared it to other pools on the Island. Banman said the fees the local club pays are not the highest in the region.

“There are five other groups that are higher than them,” said Banman, adding that Ravensong rates fall in the middle. They’re “definitely not the most expensive on the island.”

The club, Banman said, has been successful in the past in landing grants from the RDN and will again benefit from funding assistance this year. He indicated that this helps ease their costs.

As well, the club is not being charged to use the other amenities in the pool, such as the hot tub, steam and the sauna, said Banman.

“They’re allowed to use that although technically they could be charged to use that,” said Banman. “It’s a good relationship. We don’t want to strain it.”

Banman said the RDN has looked at ways to come up with the best cost for the club and also for opportunities for the group to generate some funds.

“I am not sure if they are aware of it but we’ve allowed them to sell some signage around the pool as a way of sponsorship and fundraising to help with their fees,” said Banman.

The user rates of the pool are reviewed by a District 69 Recreation Commission sub-committee every three years. The next one is due in August of 2019. Banman said the RDN will again do an analysis of the pool’s user rate and compare it to other facilities on the Island, as well as look for ways to reduce the cost to local clubs.

Banman advised against rolling it back now, and the commission agreed.

Bill Veenhof, Electoral Area H director and RDN chair, encouraged staff to direct the club to recreational grants to assist them but “I would not support changing fees in mid-stream.”

Send story tips to: michael.briones@pqbnews.com

Just Posted

Qualicum man sentenced for tying up, robbing another man

Gabriel Stephen Nelson robbed and assaulted travelling businessman in 2017

Parksville man ‘parks’ horse during liquor store pit stop

As long as animal wasn’t jaywalking, no problem, says city official

Parksville roundtable highlights need for affordable housing, recreation

Mayor Ed Mayne held facilitated event in January to hear visions for city, council

RDN to form new group to replace Northern committees

Recreation commissioners disappointed with the decision

Second delivery of building units for 222 Corfield in Parksville arrives March 21

Vehicles should expect intermittent single-lane alternating traffic

VIDEO: Can you believe it? This B.C. hill pulls cars backwards up a slope

Sir Isaac Newton had clearly never been to this Vernon anomaly when he discovered gravity

Canucks hang on for 7-4 win over Senators

Horvat nets 2 for Vancouver

European, Canadian regulators to do own review of Boeing jet

Air Canada plans to remove the Boeing 737 Max from its schedule at least through July 1

Prime minister defends Liberal budget measures as sales effort gets underway

Conservatives under Andrew Scheer say it’s a spree funded by borrowing against the future

Mayor meets with B.C. health minister on homeless taxi transfers

Two homeless people were discharged from Surrey Memorial and sent to a Chilliwack shelter

B.C. lottery winner being sued by co-workers

They claim he owes them $200,000 each, in a lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver

Teacher reprimanded for conduct towards special needs student

Alan Stephen Berry told vice principal he did not have time to use positive strategies

‘Full worm super moon’ to illuminate B.C. skies on first day of spring

Spring has sprung, a moon named in honour of thawing soil marks final super moon until 2020

Having phone within sight while driving does not violate law: B.C. judge

The mere presence of a cell phone within sight of a driver is not enough for a conviction, judge says

Most Read