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Parkland YMCA seeks additional help from city

Faced with a cruel economy and lack of adequate support from the community, the YMCA of Broward County has sought additional financial support from Parkland to tide over its current problems it faces in operating the Parkland YMCA Family Center. The center has not been able to break even so far.

At a recent meeting, City Commissioners unanimously agreed to waive off, for the fourth year running, the $100,000 that YMCA was to pay as lease for operating the city’s community center. They however had their reservations about the city shelling out another $100,000 to pay the electric, water, trash, and AC service maintenance costs of the facility during the next fiscal year, as requested by the organization.

Commissioner Jared Moskowitz said he was not comfortable with the idea of the city having to take money out of its rainy day funds to pay the facility’s bills. “I don’t look at the Y as a money maker. I want it to succeed. I don’t know if I am comfortable with the city writing the Y a check. We will have to take that money out of our reserves. I am a no vote for that. ”

Moskowitz wanted to know what it would cost the city if the Y were to leave the facility. “How much will it cost annually to keep the facility closed? I want to look at the numbers before I make a decision. I didn’t vote for the Y to become a line item on our budget.”

Sheryl Woods, YMCA president and CEO, said the organization was doing all it could to attract new members. “We are reaching out to the community; we need to get more members. We don’t see this as just a financial transaction between the YMCA and the city. We are committed to being here. We want this to be in a spirit of partnership. That is why we spent $51,000 last year in Parkland last year so that people who couldn’t otherwise afford to join the facility could do so.”

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