Response To YMCA

By February 5, 2013Letters

Open letter to Stephen Butz, President and CEO, YMCA of Greater Vancouver,

Your recent question/answer interview with Abbotsford Today raised numerous questions re whether or not public funding for YMCA Abbotsford would be a prudent use of taxpayer money. I’m hopeful that your response to those questions will help our community make an informed decision that’s based on a transparent look at all the facts .

Your answers to questions made clear that YMCA was out to shape public opinion. Your description of YMCA’s attributes leaves taxpayers with the impression that a community’s well-being is fundamentally reliant on YMCA’s virtues and programs — possibly as essential as mom and apple pie? Some Councillors had objected to letting [the] YMCA loose in our community before the public was brought [up] to speed regarding the relevant issues. They felt the community should be introduced to the YMCA by Council, but only after a true hard costs/benefits rationale had been properly analyzed for transparent presentation to the community. Those City Councillors were troubled by the possibility that YMCA would be let loose in our community before our priorities were determined and before all the facts were known. Unfortunately, a majority of councillors disagreed with that concern (more about those Councillors below).

And now [we] find ourself faced with YMCA’s premature promotion.

Please note that Abbotsford taxpayers are currently struggling with an increasing budget deficit, a disproportionately high tax burden, a majority of Councillors who appear unable to accept responsibility for their past fiscal mismanagement, and a decision-making process made dysfunctional because of it. YMCA has stepped into the crosshairs of that debate as a result of its request for public funding. That unfortunate fact has exacerbated the very problem taxpayers are currently trying to fix.

During the interview you state, “It’s clear that some residents are opposed to all significant capital investments in Abbotsford at this time.” You may or may not be aware of the reasons why residents are opposed to all capital investment at this time. The basis of their objections are the result of being misled [by] their City Council about the need for some capital investments, being misled about true costs of others, and because of the City’s egregious mismanagement of some significant capital investments that were green lighted. The upshot is that our City grossly failed its citizens. As a result, all taxpayers are now left to bear the crippling burden of those failures. High property taxes remind every residents with jagged precision just how badly the City has mismanaged its fiscal responsibilities. As a result, capital investments have become suspect by default. Abbotsford taxpayers have no confidence in the integrity of Council’s capital spending habits and for that reason would not support public funding for YMCA.

Abbotsford taxpayers have come to understand that YMCA’s benefits will remain unaffordable until Abbotsford’s fiscal house is put in order. And that could take another decade.

Most people like the YMCA and the work it does, but that fact does not hold YMCA above criticism. I believe a healthy democracy works best when honesty, transparency and public engagement are central to the decision-making process. To facilitate that dynamic, it’s imperative for Abbotsford’s residents to have full access to all the information driving YMCA’s funding request. Of equal importance is the need for Council to provide the public with full disclosure of the true costs of the public’s funding liability.

I’ve enclosed a full copy of your interview with Abbotsford Today below*. My Observations and Questions are interspersed throughout the interview text.

Abbotsford’s residents look forward to your response. I invite Abbotsford Councillors’ comments also.

Thanks for your consideration.

Walter Neufeld

*Full Interview

The YMCA’s Position

YMCAAbbotsford Today: What made the YMCA decide Abbotsford would be a good fit for your business model?
Stephen Butz: Our interest in Abbotsford is about our mission, not our business model. For the last 127 years, the YMCA has been serving communities throughout Vancouver as a leading not-for-profit charity. For generations, the heart of that work has focused on communities that need support in raising healthy children and families so the whole community can be strong. The facilities, programs, and services offered by the Y are simply tools to achieve this purpose. We have figured out how to operate these facilities in a prudent, sustainable fashion, and that is why government, community organizations, countless donors and municipalities across Canada have partnered with us. The days are over when any one of us can address the complex set of challenges facing a community like Abbotsford. Rather, we are putting our shared capacity to work together on behalf of communities to work. That is why we want to be here.

In fact, our relationship with Abbotsford didn’t start with us. Back in 2010, we were invited by the City to consider bringing a new YMCA to your community. That led to a disciplined process to understand what would need to be true in support of a new YMCA. We spent two years finding these answers, much of which is now been presented to Council and in the public domain.

Why were we asked? Likely the same reason every growing community starts looking for new ways to deliver on important community needs in a cost effective way. Abbotsford is projected to grow to 156,160 by 2016. By 2036, you’ll add another 70,400 more people to a total of 208,400 (City of Abbotsford Summary Demographic Profile,, p. 4).

Why do we want to be here? Because building strong kids and strong families is what we do.

**WN Observations: You begin the interview by stating, “Our interest in Abbotsford is about our mission, not our business model.” Yet, YMCA’s driving interest includes both its “mission” and its “business model”. It is, after all, a corporate entity with $5.99 billion revenues annually. Reveues that are driven by a business model that “puts business in non-profit and non-profit in business.” Although YMCA has an altruistic component, its “business model” seems to be steering its current expansion, and that strategic course appears to be a relatively new phenomenon.

WN Questions: Alternatively, if YMCA’s Abbotsford interest is principally driven by its “mission”, why is the “mission” entirely subject to whether or not YMCA gets $17.5 million taxpayer dollars for the building* ?

-Why doesn’t YMCA work within an existing building, with existing social/recreational service providers and thereby enhance its “mission” for our community’s benefit? YMCA would thereby fulfil its “mission” and Abbotsford’s tax savings would be substantial. Everyone wins.
-Alternatively, if YMCA’s success is based solely on tax funding for a building, rather than working cooperatively with existing service providers from an existing building, then what, precisely, is YMCA’s “mission”?

“We have figured out how to operate these facilities in a prudent, sustainable fashion, and that is why government, community organizations, countless donors and municipalities across Canada have partnered with us.” Butz

From a critic’s perspective, YMCA’s model appears to have figured one simple truth: how to tap into an endless stream of taxpayers’ money. From Abbotsford taxpayers’ perspective, that model is both harmful and unsustainable.

WN Question: If its accurate to say YMCA’s successful “mission” is inseparable from a business model that’s entirely dependant on public funding for an expensive building program, and, if substantial municipal property tax waivers (in this case $800,000. per year for 40 years =$32,000,000. million dollars) are additional prerequisites, then isn’t YMCA’s operating model simply a vehicle for re-taxing communities, like Abbotsford, for purposely underfunded existent social services? Let’s call it, Taxation by Other Means.

Butz Quote: “The days are over when any one of us can address the complex set of challenges facing a community like Abbotsford. Rather, we are putting our shared capacity to work together on behalf of communities to work. That is why we want to be here.”

WN Questions:
-If the above quote is true, will YMCA commit to working cooperatively with existing service providers and from within an existing building?
-Will you work with Abbotsford’s taxpayers to lighten the fiscal load instead of adding to the burden?
-What new support would the YMCA deliver to help “…raise healthy children and families so the whole community can be strong”?
-Under the YMCA’s Taxation by Other Means program, what new kinds of tools would new YMCA facilities, programs, and services offer our community?
-Where will YMCA’s new members come from if they’re not simply drawn away from existing services? Many front-line social workers and existing businesses worry that a new YMCA will gut their longstanding programs &/or businesses for very similar reasons.
-And taxpayers worry YMCA’s presence will simply drive up their tax burden without a measurable net benefit
-Many front line social workers have experienced systematic cutbacks for years, but their work load remains the same and our taxes keep increasing. Taken together, that strategy has created a fiscal hole in the wall of our community. YMCA’s business model appears designed to paper over it.
-What statistical data do you have to show that YMCA presence in a community provides greater taxpayer benefit than those provided by existing services?

AT: Were you prepared for the volume of objections and the depth of the anger you are running into at this stage of the discussions?

SB: The best community decisions are made when everyone has a voice, so we welcome these discussions and invite people to participate in the conversation. We all know there are few, if any, communities in Canada that has enough resources to meet all their needs. We also know that a lot of people have a different view of which needs are most important. From the very beginning of this process, we have stated that both the City and the Y are entitled to make their own decisions. It’s important to remember this is not just about the City’s decision to invest $17.5 million in a new YMCA, but it’s also about the YMCA’s decision to invest our $17.5 million in Abbotsford. Like you, we cannot take this decision lightly. We have to do our homework and ensure the investment can be protected over the long term.

With few exceptions, those who have voiced their concerns have indicated they support the Y and the potential value it brings, but worry about the economic health of their city. This is fair game and should be part of the informed discussion and prudent due diligence considered by Council.

AT: Why do you think you have run into such strong and vocal opposition?

SB: To find out what influences a citizen’s opinion, you would have to ask them. It’s clear that some residents are opposed to all significant capital investments in Abbotsford at this time. While everyone has the right to voice their concerns, our case for investment in Abbotsford is based on the thousands who have signaled overwhelming support for a YMCA. We have assessed this in a proven, independent manner, with professional research firms who specialize in understanding the scope of engagement and participation this new YMCA will achieve. Without this level of support, we would have exited this opportunity long ago.

There is a lot of misinformation about the YMCA in Abbotsford right now. Misinformation that is false and misleading. So I invite Abbotsford residents to learn more about our charitable organization—about the important social issues we are trying to address in communities across the Lower Mainland, as well as Abbotsford, through the provision of important and convenient programs and services for children, youth and families. You can visit –

————————–— our cause website that outlines who we are and what we care about. We also invite all residents to visit ———————————–where they can find details about the proposed facility and answers to frequently asked questions.

WN Observations: I’m curious to see the questionnaire used by the research firms YMCA used to poll thousands of Abbotsford residents overwhelming support for it.

WN Questions:
-Will you provide me with copies of the research Poll questions and responses?
-Did the questionairre include disclosure of the full actual aggregate costs taxpayers will be liable for?
-Did it include details about which new services YMCA will bring to Abbotsford?
-Did it include clear details about how the YMCA would augment/support existing social serves?
-Please detail which information currently circulating in our community about the YMCA is false and/or misleading? Please also provide supporting documentation to show why the information is false and/or misleading?

AT: What can the YMCA offer the taxpayers of Abbotsford?

SB: Offers are easy. Here are our promises. The YMCA is…

A place that helps families raise healthy, resilient children.
A place that helps youth and teens achieve their full potential.
A place that understands health as a resource for living and helps people get there.
A place that is for everyone, and no one gets turned away due to an inability to pay.
A place that will help alleviate isolation, disconnection and loneliness.
A place that understands community needs are met when we work together.

WN Observations: the above list is laudable but it is not exclusive to YMCA’s goals, it also describes the goals of most families, most existing public schools, religious sanctuaries, public recreation centres, and many public social services.

WN Questions:
-What new services does Abbotsford actually get for its 17.5 million dollar contribution and its $800,000. dollar annual property tax waiver (equaling $32,000,000. over 40 years)?
-What other taxpayer contributions (public funding) will YMCA seek? What is the value of each contribution?
-Will YMCA approach Fraser Hospital for funding? If yes, what is the value of that additional taxpayer funding?

And in the act of creating this new place, we further promise:

To be fully responsible for 100% of the cost of ongoing operations
To not ask for one more dime than the City’s share of capital funding
To build a world class facility which will include a fully accessible aquatic centre, gymnasium, multipurpose spaces for children and youth, family development centre, health and wellness and exercise studio, walking/running track, outdoor play spaces for children and change rooms to serve the whole family.
To grow programs and services throughout the community in collaboration with schools, community organizations and other levels of government.

These are not empty promises. It is what we are doing today, on the ground, working with families and individuals in communities throughout the Lower Mainland, the Fraser Valley, BC and Canada.

AT: The YMCA is a large organization and you have had a great deal of success in other cities. Where your model has worked well, why has that been so?
SB: Municipalities across Canada are looking for new ways to meet the needs of their growing communities. The YMCA has a strong track record of partnerships with municipalities to provide much-needed programs for kids, families and individuals of all ages and abilities.

The YMCA tailors its programs and services to meet the unique emerging needs of the community we are serving. Today, we serve more than 100,000 women, men and children through our 145 locations across the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley. Some of these are community centres, some are camps, some are employment programs, youth outreach and child care centres. We are able to offer this broad range of successful programs because:

We don’t work alone: We work with more than 155 community partners to deliver programs and services.
We enable people to be successful: We don’t focus directly on solving a community’s problems, rather we help men, women, children and youth from that community to reach their full potential so that they can transform and strengthen their own neighbourhoods.
We are staff and volunteer led: More than 2,800 volunteers and 1,200 staff are delivering YMCA programs in the Lower Mainland.
We have experience partnering with the local municipal government to take a shared approach to addressing vital needs of the people in their community.
Local communities have contributed necessary funds to enable the YMCA to build a centre of community to be used as a vehicle to bring programs and services to its community.

While size and experience mean a certain degree of capacity, we do not judge ourselves by how big we are. What matters to us is the ability to be relevant locally—to meet needs in a community where we can make a contribution consistent with our mission and values.

*AT: Does the success of the YMCA in Abbotsford depend on the $17.5 million (or 50% of the capital costs) from taxpayers (i.e., is the $17.5 million a deal breaker)?

*SB: Yes*. In fact, taxpayers foot the bill when it comes to pretty much every dime a municipality spends. You elect a Council to make informed decisions in consideration of many demands faced by every community, everywhere. For our part, we have tried to make sure the City’s decision, just like the YMCA’s decision, is informed. We have based our case on a few simple assumptions:

As a growing community, Abbotsford has needs now, and those needs are only going to get bigger with time. Sooner or later, the City will need to address these needs through some kind of investment in public infrastructure of this nature.
The Y meets its charitable mission every day. We ask volunteers, donors, all levels of government, community partners and private business to join us in this important work.
A partnership with the Y means you’ll save millions of dollars in the construction and operation of a new community centre. Anyone suggesting otherwise is simply ignoring the facts.

YMCA-Municipal projects across Canada typically have access to provincial and/or federal infrastructure funding specifically designated to these types of initiatives. Such funding does not exist in British Columbia. This pushes the funding burden on to the proponents which is why an equitable approach to capital funding was established as a starting point. The Y has also acknowledged the equitable sharing of savings if in fact new sources of funding are identified (re: new provincial – federal funding) or we can achieve cost savings in line with the $35MM total project budget.

WN Observations: see discussion above**

AT: Councillor Henry Braun has raised the estimated $800,000 per year in tax forgiveness you will be requesting. How can you justify such an enormous demand from the taxpayers of Abbotsford?

SB: Because the benefit accrued through the YMCA’s involvement far exceeds the value of the tax benefit. The Government of Canada gives charities exemption from taxes because we earn it every day. We have to meet standards and responsibilities no private for-profit corporation has to meet. We have committed our $17.5MM, taken responsibility for ongoing operations saving a minimum of $40MM over the 40 year life of the facility. In addition, we have worked with Fraser Health to develop an innovative centre combining a YMCA with a Community Health Centre, collaborated on the renewal of the former hospital site to bring long term care facilities to Abbotsford, not to mention the potential for market housing (which will generate municipal revenues). Furthermore, we have completed a independent economic impact study to help Council see the secondary economic benefits associated with the new Y relative to employment growth, our investment in inclusiveness, and the economic lift a $35MM construction project in a part of the City looking for renewal affords.

Municipalities across Canada have seen fit to recognize the YMCA’s tax exempt status for generations. If opposition to this is based on economic loss, in Abbotsford, there is clearly a case to the contrary.

WN Questions: When did YMCA receive Canadian/ BC charity status?

AT: The word ‘ownership’ seems to have been an on-again off-again part of this proposal in the sense that, at one time the City was expected to retain ownership stake in the property. What ownership options would you be prepared to put on the table for taxpayers to consider?

SB: Council identified the need to consider co-ownership as a condition of their continued involvement. Again, this was the purpose of the Memorandum of Understanding—to identify the conditions necessary to advance this initiative from both the City and YMCA’s perspective. The YMCA is quite willing to find a co-ownership solution as long as it protects our collective ability to reinvest into the next YMCA 40-years from now. We are committed to the future of this community and are in this for the long term. A potential co-ownership model could take a variety of forms and will require input from all parties: The City of Abbotsford, YMCA, and given our potential alignment with a Community Health Centre, the Fraser Valley Health Authority.

WN Question: When referring to co-ownership with Abbotsford, do you mean of the land or the building?

WN Questions re Market housing on adjoining lands:
-Can you detail the relationship between YMCA and the proposed market housing planned for the adjoining lands?
-Are YMCA partners/principles/administrators in any way linked to the market housing component of the adjoining lands development?
-Who will be building the market housing?
-Will Fraser Health receive a portion of the profits from the sale of the market housing?
-Will Fraser Hospital receive a portion of the profits from the sale of the market housing?
-Will YMCA receive a portion of the profits from the sale of the market housing?
-Will a public invitation be extend to potential developers who want to participate in the market housing development?

AT: How much influence has the Fraser Health Authority (FHA) had over the discussions between the City and the YMCA? Specifically, as the owner of the land on which the YMCA is slated to be but one part of a very large development, has the FHA been a part of the negotiations with the YMCA and the City?

SB: Very positive influence. The Health Authority has plans to build a Community Health Centre that would co-locate services in Primary Care, Home Health, Mental Health as well as a variety of health prevention programs. We think this is a good fit with the YMCA and tackles the issues we have been invited into the community to address. In addition, Fraser Health is working with other agencies to build a brand new 200-bed Seniors Residential Care facility. We are told that these beds are desperately needed in Abbotsford. As reported to Council, part of the funding required for these facilities is generated through the development of market housing. Developers have told the Health Authority that the market housing will not sell unless there is a YMCA on the site.

WN Questions re Market housing on adjoining lands:
-Developers stressed the YMCA was needed to ensure sales. I understand lakes also make developments more saleable. Did they demand lakefront property too (please excuse the sarcasm)?
-What other public funding enticements did they ask for and get?
-Were developers given any type of guarantees and/or subsidies toward their involvement in the project?
-Will co

nstruction bids be put out for public tender?

Overall, a combination of a Y, Community Health Centre, Long Term Care facility and market housing represents a major infrastructure investment in Abbotsford and the rejuvenation of this central city neighbourhood.

AT: If the City of Abbotsford decides it cannot afford to participate in the project until it has put its financial house in order, would the YMCA still be interested in coming to Abbotsford at a later date?

SB: Currently, the YMCA is engaged with three other communities at various stages of the facility development process. We expect to build at least three new YMCA centers over the next decade, all in collaboration with local municipalities. As our work is most advanced in Abbotsford, we see one of three options:

Say yes to the municipal funding share and we hit the ground running now.
Say no to the municipal funding share, and we turn our attention and resources to other emerging opportunities.
Say yes to the municipal funding share, but begin the project as a later date. This is a new option we are prepared to explore. Right now Abbotsford holds the priority one spot of the three projects we will develop. We would be prepared to consider advancing another project and delay Abbotsford potentially for 2-3 years. Perhaps this would benefit the City in consideration of their capacity to finance their share. Such an option would be subject to a firm confirmation of funding by the City in order to allow the YMCA to advance its other plans with some certainty.

WN Observations: As noted above, Abbotsford cannot afford YMCA funding for the foreseeable future.

AT: Is there anything we’ve forgotten to ask or anything you would like to add?

SB: When considering whether the Abbotsford Family YMCA is a project worthy of support, Abbotsford citizens need to ask themselves what kind of community they want.

The YMCA imagines a community where:

All children and youth are happier, and have a higher healthy life expectancy than their parents.
People know their neighbours, respect diversity and thrive on a sense of belonging.
We share a sense of social responsibility within our community by working together.
People experience better health in spirit, mind and body.
Families thrive.

A healthy debate is good. Yet while the nay-sayers have been vocal, many residents support the project, and agree the investment is a smart one for their future:

“The YMCA deal makes sense, both economically, and for what it would bring to our city. In addition to revitalizing central Abbotsford, the YMCA’s facilities and youth programs would be of tremendous benefit to the nearly 2,000 school children in the area.” Excerpt from letter to editor, Abbotsford News

We invite everyone to learn more about our organization and the proposed Abbotsford Family YMCA, at ????????????

WN Concluding remarks: As shown above, Abbotsford taxpayers cannot afford to fund YMCA’s building program in the foreseeable future.

Abbotsford taxpayers will watch with great interest to see which “mission” is central to YMCA service to Abbotsford. Will it choose to serve Abbotsford’s needs cost-effectively, or will YMCA pursue a Tax by Other Means building program model?

Abbotsford taxpayers respectfully ask YMCA to work within an existing building, with existing social/recreational service providers and thereby enhance the sustainability of YMCA’s “mission” for the sake of our community’s greater benefit. The tax savings would be substantial. And everyone wins.

Join the discussion 5 Comments

  • I had no reason to give the YMCA even a passing thought for the past 40 years or so.

    Now that they have given me $17.5 million reasons, – I am thinking really hard about the YMCA.

    I think they have pulled off one amazing con job for a lot of years, on a lot of gullible city leaders.

    What a piece of cake this has been for the Y, and what a giant rip-off to the tax-payers.

    They are now among the fat-cat rich organizations. Of course they are. City Councils are notoriously lazy about reading documents or researching the issues put before them (as amply proven by most of the people warming the seats around the Abbotsford council table)

    The YMCA started off pure as the driven snow. Today they just move into a town with no critical analysis being applied to anything about them.

    But Abbotsford is broke from the slovenly way we’ve been led into mega-million dollar glamour projects, and we need to sit up and shake the fog out of our heads.

    We can’t allow this Council to lead us on any more of their foolish, ill thought out proposals.

    Free cash to the YMCA. Free land to the YMCA. Tax-free businesses within their new complex – forever!

    What’s not to love?

  • FortheKids says:

    Does Gerda Peachy ever have anything nice to say about anyone, anytime? I recognize that we have some financial challenges here because of the mistakes of the past. However when she starts slandering other people and other organizations it crosses the line.

  • Hello ‘FortheKids: I’ve grown accustomed to seeing my name in some pretty nasty public comments. Your critique is mild by comparison so I’ll attempt to respond.

    You say, “slandering other people and other organizations it crosses the line.” I don’t think I am in the habit of gratuitously posting public criticism of private individuals, however the mayor and councillors of Abbotsford have become drunk with power.

    The gift to the YMCA was almost signed, sealed and delivered by the time we taxpayers got wind of any details.

    ‘FortheKids” makes it sound as though you care about the wellbeing of children.

    If we had good leadership, at all levels of government parents could spend more quality time with their own children. As it is, people must work longer hours to feed more money into the hands of greedy, sometimes corrupt government. This latest push to gift the Y with free land, free cash and tax-freedom is strange. This is not for the kids. The YMCA is rich, our city is broke. Bruce Banman and those on his side can freely give their own money to the Y. The public has spoken loudly on this, and ‘his worship’ seems to have grown dull of hearing.

    As to ‘slandering’,– I’ve lost track of the nasty editorials by our local media, featuring me, or Richard, or both. The papers also print attacks against us via their favoured letter writers, Greg Lanning, Robert T. Rock, and other less familiar names.

    If we write a reasoned response to the paper, it rarely gets published.

    Mike Archer took a pretty hard swipe at me when I ran for council, and a few other times. Unlike other media, he believes in fair play, and even posts things I write though holding radically opposite views.

    An example of mean-spirited journalism is Andrew Holota’s recent editorial about the Peacheys.

    I think I understand why Mr. Holota has his nose out of joint. It likely has little to do with our feeble, rather lonely efforts to keep Abbotsford from turning into a cesspool. He’s more likely annoyed at my suggestion that the Abbotsford News is too slavishly fawning over all things City Hall.

    The News is mostly silent while City Hall lurches like a drunken sailor. You might look to your brave media to tell you that ‘the emperor has no clothes.’ But most of the time you look in vain.

    I used to think we had good City governance and reasonable media coverage. I don’t anymore.

    Here’s my response to Andrew’s latest Peachey tirade. (I don’t expect him to print it)

    To: Andrew Holota

    Hi Andrew: Lynda Grace Philippsen is a professional writer, who questions, “Why do they get printed?” (Abbotsford News – Feb. 5/13)

    Lynda probably speaks for you when she complains about our “ever-present voices on morality”.

    It should cheer you enormously to consider that mostly we’re batting zero.

    Nonetheless, I will remind you, that as one who has a wide audience for your views, you have a responsibility before God, whether you care about him or not.

    I have consistently asked that “a minimal standard of decency” be in place, for events in our “publicly-owned facilities”.

    You cheapen the discourse by trying to portray us as ‘goody-two-shoes’, ‘holier-than-thou’, kill joys.

    And I would put the question to you Andrew, …..Is there nothing you would draw the line at? Are there no events too degrading, too disgusting, too violent for publicly-owned buildings?

    You and Bruce Banman freak out at the mere possibility of Council and staff so much as discussing guidelines for future reference.

    Anyway, you win. Are you happy?

    Gerda Peachey

  • Terry Thomas says:

    My concern is whether or not we need a YMCA facility in Abbotsfordc at this time. We have 2 municipal recreation centres and a number of other recreational facilities paid for and maintained by the taxpayers. Now we want to offer the YMCA incentives totaling $17.5M and tax waivers that could total another $32M to compete against our municipal recreation facilities. What would it cost to construct a new recreation centre if the need is there?
    We are still shaking our heads over the Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre and as a municipality will be paying for more than its construction for a number of years.

Leave a Reply