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The latest YMCA press release and The City of Raytown’s Response (revised with YMCA proposal)

The YMCA of Greater Kansas City senior leadership led by CEO David Byrd as well as the City of Raytown senior leadership led by Mayor David Bower last met on Friday, March 22, to continue conversations regarding possible solutions to financing and sustaining the operations of the YMCA in Raytown.

 Charitable donations, membership dues and program revenue have not generated enough to pay for the Richard C. Green, Sr. Family YMCA’s operational and capital expenses. As a result, the Y is in a long-term deficit financial situation for the center, and the Richard C. Green, Sr. Family YMCA will close on April 12, 2013.

 City residents and the Y reached out to the City of Raytown for assistance to keep the Richard C. Green, Sr. Family YMCA open. Both the Y and the city have presented possible solutions for consideration.

 The last two meetings involved the Y’s and the city’s chief financial officers to explore the costs and the realistic financial options. 

  1. The YMCA could continue to operate the facility as a Y with outside financial support from an outside funder including but not limited to the school district and/or the city that would offset operating deficits.  
  2. The YMCA could transition the operations through the sale of the facility to another interested organization including but not limited to the school district or the city.
  3. Most recently on March 22, the Y proposed to the city to subsidize membership for the residents of Raytown, allowing the residents to purchase a membership at a much-reduced monthly rate. The revenue from both the city’s subsidy and the patrons of Raytown would generate enough money to meet expenses if the membership would grow by 1,000 new members.

 The reality for all of the options presented is that neither the City of Raytown nor the YMCA of Greater Kansas City have the finances to cover the needs at this time.

 The city asked for a six-month extension to give them time to explore presenting an issue on the ballot for the residents’ vote. Both parties agreed that a favorable vote is not guaranteed.

 The YMCA of Greater Kansas City can’t extend the closing without a guarantee of financial support because it does not have the dollars to support the losses that continue to grow as membership declines.

 The financial commitment needed to keep the 8th Street, Independence and Richard C. Green YMCAs open varies for each facility because of differences in the size of the facilities, deferred maintenance costs, amenities at the facilities, amount of staff needed to run the facility, and the amount of deficits in membership and program revenue.

 For example, Richard C. Green YMCA operational expenses exceed that of the 8th Street YMCA because of the amount of membership and program subsidy needed to overcome deficits in membership and program revenue, the larger staff team needed and the cost of operating the indoor pool.

 At this time, there is not an agreed upon resolution to keep the Richard C. Green YMCA open, and the Y believes we have exhausted all possibilities for a joint resolution.  

 Next steps for the YMCA include securing community space to offer programming to the Raytown community and moving forward with selling the building.

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Raytown’s response below

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YMCA Final Offer to Raytown

YMCA Negotiations Started With Non-negotiable Base Requirements

Raytown, MO?The City of Raytown recently met with YMCA officials to see if we could agree upon a way to temporarily keep the Y open after they abruptly announced that they would be closing the Richard C. Green facility on April 12. In a recent press release from the YMCA, they write that Raytown had not offered any proposal or financial support. This statement is very misleading. It is important for our community to understand what the city was offered by the Y and how the negotiations were handled.

 At the March 22 meeting, the YMCA brought three non-negotiable issues to the table that had to be addressed before any proposals from the city would be entertained. These issues were:

1)     Address long term sustainability for operations. The Y indicated that our citizens had not supported the Y to date.

The city was requesting six months to see what our citizens were willing and wanting to do with this facility. We were given one week to determine this. That is not enough time to put together a feasible, fiscally responsible plan. We would not even be able to put it to a vote of the citizenry that quickly. The family of Richard C. Green gave the land to the Y, our citizens donated thousands of dollars as evidenced by a plaque within the Y and the city has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars into the facility and grounds. To indicate that they have not been supported is a troubling statement.

2)     Address a means to take care of current and future deferred maintenance.

The city was told that the millions of dollars in deferred maintenance was non-negotiable. This is an expense that the city had no part in making, the decision to let the facility go this far without maintenance was made by the Y. We would entertain future maintenance decisions but to be able to come up with $2.1 million in deferred maintenances was unreasonable.

3)     Covering any losses the Y incurred for the next five (5) years.

Every meeting that we had with the Y this dollar amount changed. First it was $18,500 per month, then it went to nearly $40,000 per month and this last offer asked for $323, 844/ year or more based memberships, and was guaranteed for the next five years. This amounts to a blank check. We as overseers take our responsibility of the use and promise of use of the taxpayers money very seriously. This would not be fiscally prudent.

 Their requirements was that the City had to agree to all of these terms by the March 28th Y Board Meeting. David Byrd, YMCA President indicated that he would be unwilling to take any proposal we came up with to his board for consideration if these were not addressed. They were asked what amount of money that the Y was willing to offer and they indicated none. The city had already indicated that we could not meet these requirements without some consideration from the Y by way of a time extension any proposal or offer from the city would be moot. At that point, the city’s hands were tied.

 Attached to this release is the proposal document that the YMCA brought to the March 22 meeting. We regret that the city was not given the opportunity or time to see what our citizens could approve. They deserved better.

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* I am working on getting and posting or attaching the document mentioned above.

Below is the document referred to.  To see a larger version of the image, click on it. 

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Y_Proposal_March_22_Page_1_1024

 Y_Proposal_March_22_Page_2_1024

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