As a tool of economic development, Brecksville City Council is considering a proposal that would provide corporate memberships to the Community Center for taxpaying non-residents.
In other words, discount incentives for people who work here, but don’t live here.
During council’s finance committee meeting, Mayor Jerry Hruby introduced the proposal.
For the past year, the city has participated in a pilot program that opened up the recreation center to non-residents at $225 per member. Residents pay $195 per year, per person.
Hruby suggested making the pilot program permanent. And with three businesses in town asking about joining, Hruby said it makes sense.
“I don’t see this as having any kind of negative impact,” he said. “Are we going out to solicit it? No. But if we start opening it up… we open it up.”
“It’s a good economic development tool.”
A few council members suggested capping the number of corporate memberships to keep the center from becoming too crowded.
“It would make sense if we figure out some sort of number that allows us to cap (the number of corporate memberships),” said Skaljac. “We need to find out at what point the Community Center would become saturated.”
Tom Tupa, the city’s recreation director, said that there are about 12,000 total visitors to the Community Center each year. Between 600 and 1,000 people attend each day, he added.
Council members all agreed that the corporate membership wouldn’t apply to employees’ families.
“If we were able to cap the number, I’d feel more comfortable,” said councilman and committee chair Rex Mack.
Council is expected to discuss the issue further at an upcoming meeting.