Curling club pleads its case

A new tax law at city hall has the Parksville Curling Club concerned about its future.

A new tax law at city hall has the Parksville Curling Club concerned about its future.

Members of the club made a detailed presentation to city council Monday night, explaining how the disappearance of their tax exemption will cost them about $16,000 a year.

The city changed its permissive tax laws recently after lengthy debates and the input of a citizens advisory council. It means recreation groups like the curling club that were 100 per cent exempt from taxes, now have to pay 50 per cent. The annual tax bill for the curling club is about $33,000.

“We knew this would come up,” said Coun. Sue Powell.

The curling club’s building in Community Park — it served as the city’s arena before Oceanside Place was built — is owned by the Regional District of Nanaimo. Consensus around the table Monday was the aging structure would not be of much use for anything other than a curling facility.

“I can’t see a lot of use for the building if it’s not used in its current state,” said Coun. Marc Lefevbre.

The club’s Terry Miller laid open the club’s books Monday night and spoke about the “active lifestyle” the club promotes, its history of finding “funding from alternative sources” and how its volunteers are the “lifeblood” of the club.”

Miller, with club treasurer Nancy Douglas at his side, explained the club is a non-profit society with about 300 members. As for paid employees, the club has a part-time manager and an ice technician.

The pair explained to council the value the club brings to the community, including local businesses. They presented a letter of support from Tigh-Na-Mara general manager Paul Drummond, who explained his appreciation for the club’s activities, especially the hosting of big events like the provincial championships in a time of year not traditionally busy for the hotel-restaurant sector.

“That (Drummond’s letter) is an example of our value to so many businesses in our community,” said Miller.

Mayor Chris Burger and others explored ideas about how the club could reduce its tax bill and/or mitigate the financial hit, including raising fees to members and getting the building/grounds re-assessed. The city’s portion of the tax bill (at 50 per cent) is about $8,000.

“It might be a combination of factors that resolves this overall,” said Burger, who later said it’s not likely the city will revisit the permissive tax bylaw it developed last year.

Just Posted

The Arrowsmith Search and Rescue Society has outgrown its home at the Coombs-Hilliers Fire Department and will soon move to its new operations hall at the Qualicum Beach Airport. (PQB News file photo)
The Qualicum Beach Farmers Market is one of the organizations approved for a grant-in-aid by the Town of Qualicum Beach. (PQB News file photo)
COVID-19: Town of Qualicum Beach awards $80K in relief funds to community groups

Pandemic has put a financial strain on many organizations

The remains of the Mid-Island Co-op in Whiskey Creek along the Alberni Highway on Friday, June 18, after a blaze the day before devastated the gas station. (Michael Briones photo)
VIDEO: Whiskey Creek gas station destroyed by fire after camper van explosion

Nine fire departments responded to the incident, no injuries reported

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

Things are looking up for Vancouver Island as zero COVID-19 cases have been reported for the first time since October. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Island records zero new COVID-19 cases for the first time since October

For the first time since October, the province is reporting zero new… Continue reading

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

A 58-year-old B.C. woman says she was attacked by a deer while out walking her dog last week. (Paul Chiasson/THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Deer attack in southeastern B.C. leaves woman cut, battered and bruised

Liz Royer says she was out for a run last week when the deer appeared out of a bush and charged

Most Read