One of Nelson’s most popular sports organizations is struggling to pay the rent.
Glacier Gymnastics posted a net loss of $7,422 for the 2018-19 year ending in August, according to statements made public at its annual general meeting on Nov. 14.
Outgoing club president Honey Bellman said a combination of high rental costs for its space at the Civic Centre as well as a drop in enrolment are the main reasons for the loss.
Two years ago the City of Nelson rewrote Glacier’s lease agreement to account for rising utility costs. Now, a club that made a profit of over $20,000 in 2016 is in the red.
“This is the first year we’re in a pinch from it,” said Bellman.
Glacier’s popularity runs only second to the Nelson Soccer Association within the city. The club had 777 registered gymnasts last year, a drop of 20 from the year prior.
Bellman said the lower enrolment coincides with a pair of raises to fees that were made to help offset the more expensive city bill.
“We can’t say if that’s for sure because the fees have gone up, but we think we are at that threshold where we want to be accessible to everybody,” she said. “You can’t just keep raising the fees.”
Bellman said the club plans to meet with city staff to work out a new lease.
Glacier paid the city $18,900 in rent last year, plus another $8,581 in operations and maintenance costs. Its total operating expenses, which include utilities and $28,888 in payroll expenses, were $80,617. Glacier also owes the city $7,000 in outstanding fees.
The loss also comes despite major increases in grant and fundraising income. Glacier earned over $100,000 in grant funding and nearly doubled its own fundraising at $19,000.
The club spent $67,000 on capital expenditures including new mats and a vault table, as well as a new multipurpose space.