Parks and Recreation proposes new agreement with county

The RV park adjacent to the Grant County Fairgrounds has had declining revenue for several years. The Eagle/Tim Adams

CANYON CITY - Spurred by declining revenue, Jorge Ribeiro, board member of the John Day/Canyon City Parks and Recreation District, presented a proposed new lease agreement for the 25-space RV park adjacent to the Grant County Fairgrounds to the Grant County Court at its meeting on Wednesday, March 17.

Under the current contract, the parks and recreation department leases the park from the county for $10,000 a year, but Ribeiro informed courtmembers revenues are down approximately 17 percent this year.

"As of March 16 the park has taken in $21,657.44, that's about $4,500 down from last year's figures at this time of year," Ribeiro said. "We anticipate making about $30,000 this year and have a chance to break even, but we expect to lose about $2,000."

Ribeiro said he thought one of the major reasons for lower revenues was high gas prices and people just weren't traveling as much, and proposed the lease agreement for the park be reduced to $650 per month which would amount to $7,800 per year.

Teri Arnall, John Day/ Canyon City Parks and Recreation Director, said revenues at the park have been steadily declining in recent years and things don't appear to be getting any better.

"We heard that this is the last year for the BMW rally at the fairgrounds and this event is a considerable source of revenue for the RV park," she said.

Ribeiro reported he was going to begin working with the State Highway Department to get some additional signs put up indicating the location of the park.

"We need to do a better job of advertising on the four roads which lead into town," he said.

Grant County Judge Dennis Reynolds suggested a variance on the rate of 28 cents on the dollar of the total revenue as the lease agreement.

"Then we wouldn't have to speculate on whether we made a good agreement on a monthly fixed rate," he said. "This way, you would have the flexibility of not having to make a fixed payment. There would still be a monthly payment made based on receipts taken in at the park."

Reynolds further suggested the agreement would be for two years.

Courtmember Boyd Britton agreed with the suggestion and stated: "This could be a win-win situation for both parties. If the revenues were up, the monthly payment to the county would be higher. It could also be a lose-lose, depending on how much the park was used and the amount of revenue received."

Ribeiro agreed with Reynolds and stated he would present the proposal to the parks and recreation board at its next meeting.

In other court business:

Approved an intergovernmental agreement between the Grant County Corrections Department and the Department of Revenue to extend the expiration time to June 30, 2005, to attempt to collect unpaid fees owed by adults who are no longer under supervision.

"The current agreement we have expires on June 30, 2004," Ken Boethin, adult probation and juvenile department director, said.

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