Armstrong parks board moving ahead

Despite some trying circumstances, Armstrong-Spallumcheen Parks and Recreation Commission plans to continue delivering top service.

The commission recently chopped its 2011 budget by more than $200,000, including removing a $70,000 contingency fund.

Windows and glass have had to been replaced at both the Nor-Val Sports Centre and new aquatic centre after some recent acts of vandalism.

“We’re on budget and we’re quite comfortable where we’re at,” said commission chair, Coun. Dave Brew of Spallumcheen, at Monday’s township council meeting.

The commission was told to reduce its budget by both the City of Armstrong and Township of Spallumcheen.

Other reductions include dropping staffing levels by $52,000.

“We didn’t hire a summer student, and we’ve eliminated the standby/on-call weekend position, where someone would be on call to fix something,” said Brew.

A beach volleyball court slated for the aquatic centre was taken out of the budget, and no new portable bleachers will be added to the Nor-Val centre or Hassen Arena.

Special projects, including upgrading computer software at the parks and rec office, totalling $63,000 were eliminated.

And the commission’s marketing budget dropped from nearly $138,000 to $14,000.

“That hasn’t really dropped, it was labour and everything else included in the marketing numbers,” said Brew. “Both councils thought we were spending too much money on marketing, which we’re not, really. That’s just a change in what it’s called.”

To help combat the vandalism issues, Spallumcheen Coun. Christine Fraser inquired about putting up cameras at Nor-Val and the pool.

“We have discussed that briefly, but there’s no money to buy cameras,” said Coun. Ralph Leyenhorst, who also serves on the commission.