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Council Members, Natatorium Officials to Meet Behind Closed Doors Regarding Gym's Rate Structure

The group will begin the discussion in a work session format on whether or not to seek an alternative membership rates after Monday's regular City Council meeting.

A handful of Cuyahoga Falls City Council members will meet with Natatorium officlals on Monday to discuss the fitness center's current rate structure and to explore alternatives; however, the public will not be able to attend.

Council members Terry Mader, Carrie Snyder and Diana Colavecchio will sit down with Cuyahoga Falls Parks and Recreation Superintendent Bill Lohan, Assistant Superintendent Ed Stewart and Facilities Director Lori Visner to set a discussion in motion following Monday night's regular city council meeting at the , said Colavecchio.

Since there is no pending legislation and because the number of members attending doesn't constiture a council quorum, the work session format, by law, can be conducted behind closed doors.   

On Friday, Colavecchio said she's "hopeful that this process will bring about a fair result for all."

In recent weeks, the controversy on whether or not to make gay, married couples eligible for the gym's w/spouse discount has surrounded the city council and the Parks and Recreation Board. 

The issue was broached by when he and his husband, Coty May, were recently told by Natatorium staff that they could not receive the discount because their Washington D.C.-based marriage wasn't recognized in Ohio. 

Under its current rate policy, the Nat only allows married men and women who are recognized by the Ohio Constitution to receive discounted memberships.

In early February, the council asked the parks board to decide if the rate structure should be changed. , the board voted 3-2 against a motion raised by chairman Tim Gorbach to change the gym's membership rates.

If the motion had passed, the current "w/spouse" rate would have changed to the "w/partner" rate, opening the memberships up to "two persons that are legally married, or are domestic partners, or are in a civil union as recognized by any U.S. jurisdiciton," said Gorbach on March 8.

Over the last few weeks, the council discussed creating an ad hoc committee to analyze the current rate policy, study various statistics and data, gleam information from neighboring gyms and report their findings to the city council.

As of this past Friday, Colavecchio said there are currently no plans to form such a committee.

What do you think? Should Monday's Natatorium work session be closed to the public?

Wanda Minor March 26, 2012 at 08:16 PM
I like your way of thinking.
Wanda Minor March 26, 2012 at 08:17 PM
The city can't move on. They're stuck in the 50's...
Earl Elevant March 27, 2012 at 02:30 AM
Wanda, wasn't it the 50s when Robart was elected for his first term?
Jack Kelly March 27, 2012 at 11:51 AM
The Nat's rate structure is ridiculous. And Robart playing the "well, many others do it this way" is a cop-out. There's NO reason the Nat can't come up with a more basic rate structure. Weekly, monthly, daily, resident, non-resident, business, senior, youth, non-resident youth, resident senior, non-resident youth, military, non-resident military, resident military, non-resident business, youth, "youth-castle", guardian with children and so on. Good grief. One gets a migraine from looking at it. It's ridiculous. Cut the damn thing down & make it more sensible (and Robart's defense of the structure is NOT sensible at all, no matter how pissy he gets). ALL ADULT non-residents pay the same fee. Maybe have a basic non-resident 'family' rate (up to 4 members of family) and call it a day for non-resident rates. Then simplify the RESIDENT structures for adults, military, seniors, kids/family and call it a day.
Bill March 27, 2012 at 07:23 PM
Just have a non resident fee and a resident fee...charge as much as other facilities that offer a lot less and call it a day.

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