Drayton Youth Centre seeks to join list of local groups allowed free facility use

MAPLETON – Officials from the Drayton Youth Centre are asking township council to add the centre to the list of local organizations allowed to use township facilities at no cost.

However council opted not to act immediately on the request, as township officials ponder changes to the policy that allows for free usage.

The organization is planning to run a six week pickup floor hockey fundraiser at the PMD arena in April and May.

“We were just wondering if we could be added to the list of charities that can use the facilities at no cost as it’s a fundraiser for the youth center,” DYC secretary and event coordinator Cori Claus asked council during a delegation at the Feb. 13 meeting.

Claus said the youth centre provides “ a safe place for youth to hang out on Wednesday and Friday nights” and that the funds raised from the floor hockey event  would be used for more training for volunteers, physical and mental health services for youth and more outings.

Council received the delegation for information.

Later in the meeting as council was preparing to vote on a bylaw setting fees and charges for townships services, councillor Marlene Ottens moved an amendment, seconded by councillor Martin Tamblyn, to add the centre to the list of groups allowed free use of township facilities.

However councillor Michael Martin suggested simply waiving the fee for the floor hockey event, rather than making the center eligible for on-going free facility usage.

“This is not about the merit of the work, obviously, that the centre does. My struggle with it is similar to other user groups that we’ve declined from adding, in that they operate in a very different vein than a service club, in my opinion,” said Martin.

“It just feels different than say the Kinsmen or Kinettes,” he added.

The amendment was defeated with only Ottens voting in favour.

Tamlyn noted he is in favour of supporting the youth centre proposal for the floor hockey event, “but then it’s a bigger question moving forward.”

The fees and charges bylaw was approved in a separate vote, but CAO Manny Baron pointed out the question of which groups will be eligible for free facility usage will be addressed later on.

List is growing

“Originally when this idea came out It was it was to try to help service clubs and the list has been getting longer and longer and longer,” he noted.

Baron said staff would be discussing the issue and will “provide suggestions to council on how we feel we should move forward with this particular part of the policy” and “the entire policy manual for that matter.”

North Wellington Community News