Village officials, CBRAC brainstorm ways to close the gap during ongoing budget talks.
The village's tennis facility needs an influx of memberships to help offset a major deficit, according to village auditor Jim Olivo.
The facility currently brings in $380,000 in revenue while expenses total $460,000. "You can't keep doing that," Olivo said.
"If we keep running an $80,000 deficit that's not a good thing," trustee Dennis Donnelly added. "There's only two sides to this - revenues and expense. How do we get that closer?Follow Garden City Patch on Facebook.
Kevin Ocker, chairman of the Board of Commissioners for Recreational and Cultural Affairs, said the facility is "fine" and those who join are "happy with it" but perhaps the department could step up its marketing efforts. "We'll have to look at it," he said during budget talks this month.
Citizens Budget Review & Advisory Committee (CBRAC
) member Linda Ryan said in talking with many of the women she plays tennis with, they'd like to see the department purchase a ball machine and create a list serve.
"They all said they'd love something like that," she said.
"It could be something you subscribe to and you can mix and match with people in the village you don't know. But if there's available court time, which I assume there is, it would fill some of those hours."
Finance chair and trustee Andrew Cavanaugh thought Ryan's suggestion was worth looking into. "What a wonderful idea," he said.
Ocker said it's hard to put his finger on it when asked if the sluggish economy was to blame. Edward Fronckwicz, assistant superintendent of recreation, said 20 years ago when the facility first opened weekends were full. Of late, the facility has seen a real "dip" in weekend play.
"You hate to say it but many are passing on," Fronckwicz said.
Ryan, who uses the facility often, said down time could be offered at a reduced rate to encourage people who otherwise wouldn't play.
Trustee Dennis Donnelly asked whether Ocker considered marketing it to those living outside the village. Ryan, however, didn't agree with that suggestion. "No don't do that," she said.
Judy Courtney, a resident of the East who serves as president of the Eastern Property Owners' Association (EPOA), said the idea is worth looking into.
"I would appreciate looking at that and seeing whether or not that's a viable option," she said. "It does concern me that a facility we have is running at such a loss and has been for a number of years. There are opportunities there and while we do have members who use it who may or may not welcome that I do think it's probably an option we should look at."
Do you think opening the tennis facility to non-village residents is a viable option? Let us know in the comments section below.MORE TOP NEWS
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