User groups not keen to collect out of town user fee
Posted March 20,
New Tecumseth's Parks, Recreation and Culture department is having a
difficult time collecting a newly enforced non-resident surcharge
because the organizations are balking at playing the role of collection
The 20 per cent non-resident fee was to be applied to all non-residents
utilizing the Town's parks, recreation and culture
facilities effective September 1, 2016. This includes all memberships,
registrations, social rentals, and group parks and facility bookings.
An update of the situation on tonight's council agenda includes the
The report by Patrick D’Almada Director of Parks, Recreation and
Culture, notes the Town invoiced $26,944.37. Of that, $19,197 remains
in arrears. The majority of the fees in arrears for the fall of 2016
are from larger user groups including TNT Minor Hockey, the Alliston
Hornets, and New Tecumseth Civics. Though Mr. D'Almada's report does
not list which groups owe what, one of them owes 59 per cent or
$16,019.69 of the outstanding amount.
Ryan Wood, of the New Tecumseth Civics hockey organization, told Free
Press Online the team paid its non-resident fees on the gym memberships
"but haven't on our Ice."
"I don't agree with this policy as the Ice costs are already higher
then other townships close to us and this wasn't presented to us before
we could include the additional cost in our budget for this season,"
Mr. Wood said via email.
Last November, TNT Minor Hockey president Donna Horan, whose
organization estimates about 33 per cent of its players are from
outside New Tecumseth - the OMHA determines player boundaries - told
council the surcharge would add approximately $200 to the registration
Ms. Horan also echoed the similar lines from the various groups who
said the September implementation date was after their registrations
were over leaving them to go back and ask for the additional fees.
Clay Birkett, Director of Hockey Operations for the Alliston Hornets
told Free Press Online they're opposed to the surcharge and how it's
"How do you go back to TNT and ask for non-resident fees? If you want
or expect them, that should have been upfront not just billed at a
later date," said Mr. Birkett. "Makes no sense to me. They .... didnt
get flesh from the townships, now they want the people to pay."
The fees are due March 31 "and are not included in the amounts
owing in the attachment, nor discussed in this report, as these will be
addressed at the end of the winter season," according to Mr. D'Almada's
"A survey of 19 municipalities by the Central Ontario Facility
Coordinators Association shows that none of the municipalities charge a
non-resident fee for (block permit user groups), while all charge a NR
fee for registration, memberships and social rentals."