ROY — More and more fundraisers are being held at the Roy Aquatics Center.
The problem is, the city doesn’t allow that, as stated in the rental contract people sign, then ignore.
City officials are now trying to decide what to do about it. They are considering changing the policy so fundraisers can be allowed, but may also raise rental rates. Currently it costs $700 to rent the facility for an evening, and the summer night rentals fill up quickly. The upcoming summer is almost booked with rentals, and Parks and Recreation Director Travis Flint said he knows some of those rentals are for fundraisers.
City Manager Chris Davis said city officials created the rule because of the concern about a public facility being used for another group or organization to make a profit.
Many of the fundraisers are for nonprofit groups, however. Councilman Michael Stokes suggested the city require that the group holding the fundraiser be licensed with the state. He said it is a lengthy process to do it, so it would show those organizing the fundraiser are invested in the cause.
Another idea was to require the organization holding the fundraiser to be registered as an official nonprofit with the state. That idea was rejected because the fundraiser could be for someone ailing in health or another short-term cause.
Davis said the biggest concerns about fundraisers at the center focus on groups that are making a profit for a sports team or something similar, not for a cause necessarily. Councilman Dave Tafoya suggested that if that was the case, then pool rates could be raised for that particular instance.
Davis pointed out that a particular soccer club uses a park for a tournament but pays a fee to use the park because it is making a profit.
Any change to the policy wouldn’t necessarily be effective for this season because events already are booked, but some decisions need to be made about what to do about the groups that have already signed up.
Councilman Willard Cragun would like to see rates raised regardless. He also suggested researching other cities’ policies.
“My initial thought is, why do we even want to police it all? As long as we’re not losing money. Let’s get some ideas on what is appropriate,” Stokes said.
“If the money is going back into the community… let’s do it,” he said. He does want there to be clear rules though.
Flint asked the council for direction fairly soon.
“The bare minimum is, we need to recover costs and it hasn’t changed in nine years,” Councilman John Cordova said.
Once data is gathered about how neighboring communities handle aquatic center rentals, the council will make decisions in the next month.