Coun. Joe Virdiramo
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THUNDER BAY -- Coun. Joe Virdiramo says a review of how city community centres are governed is “overdue.”
City council agreed Monday night.
Council approved a motion introduced by the Westfort councillor, requesting city administration develop a report to evaluate the framework and partnership between the volunteer boards that run community centres and the city to ensure their long-term sustainability.
The resolution is in response to last month’s resignation of the president and five members of the West Thunder Community Centre’s volunteer board, which prompted a temporary closure of the Edward Street facility.
“Sometimes it takes a little incident to spur things on,” Virdiramo said following the meeting. “When this occurs then you start questioning and wondering if we should be looking at this.
The city’s recreation and culture division stepped in to help re-open the building earlier this month.
The report, which will likely be presented to the new council next year, will determine policies and procedures in place that will outline the governance model, the city’s responsibility, the responsibility of volunteer boards and how the city provides funding.
It will also conduct an independent review of each community centre, starting with West Thunder.
At the very least, Virdiramo hopes it will establish a contingency plan in case another crisis situation were to arise.
“Hopefully in the future when a volunteer board, such as the one at West Thunder, for whatever resigns that the centres continue to operate,” Virdiramo said. “I think it’s a common sense thing if we have multi-million dollar facilities in our city run by volunteers.”
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