Community Centre Associations – Joint Operating Agreements: Crucial meeting Feb 9 (Thu), Decision Feb 16 (Thu)

Killarney Community Centre[Update: The Feb 8 meeting was postponed to Feb 9 due to storm weather warnings.]

As we have reported before, the long-standing discussions about “Joint Operating Agreements” for Vancouver’s Community Centre Associations are approaching a critical point. In December, a group that includes 15 of the 20 CCAs issued a statement opposing the revised proposed text of the JOAs.  Unless modifications are made, it is likely that the CCAs will return to the BC Courts with a lawsuit.

Crucial meetings are happening this week and next, as follows, and public participation is important. See bottom for “what you can do.” Click here for examples of messages to e-mail to Park Board commissioners.

Special Board Meeting:
Community Centre Association Joint Operating Agreement

  • Feb 8 (Wed) 6:00 pm: Staff presentation and speakers, at SFU Morris J Wosk Centre for Dialogue, 580 W Hastings St [Note: The Feb 8 meeting was postponed to Feb 9 due to snowy weather conditions.]
  • Feb 9 (Thurs) 6:00 pm, at SFU Morris J Wosk Centre for Dialogue, 580 W Hastings St
  • Feb 16 (Thurs) 6:00 pm: Board discussion and vote, at Vancouver Park Board Administration Office, 2099 Beach Ave

Please visit the Park Board website for the meeting agenda, and to sign up to speak.

For a comprehensive source of the most recent perspective by the “My Community Centre” group, please visit this website: http://mycommunitycentre.com/. Find them also on Twitter at @Vancouver_CCAs. E-mail is info@mycommunitycentre.com.

The Kerrisdale Community Centre Society (KCCS) website also has a good summary of key issues from their perspective: http://www.kerrisdalecc.com/joint-operating-agreement-joa-important/.

KCCS states “At this point, KCCS and many other CCAs are not likely to sign the proposed agreement.” Why? Based on the material received to date from the Park Board, the CCAs see too much that presents operational and legal difficulties:

  • Turning over to Park Board revenue from programs and services at each community centre;
  • Park Board can to implement policies at any time that could alter the terms of the agreement;
  • Conditions that violate the Income Tax Act for Registered Charities and the Societies Act;
  • Park Board can unilaterally cancel the agreement any time for any reason it chooses;
  • Overriding the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)(Canada); and
  • Allowing the Park Board to interfere in the CCAs’ internal affairs.

Below we include a few excerpts from their websites. There appears to have been very limited media coverage of this topic in the past several months. 

For more background reading, including a list of the CCAs and community centres concerned, please visit our post: “Community Centre Associations disappointed with Vancouver Park Board’s ‘continued refusal to address community needs’ in draft Joint Operating Agreement” (CityHallWatch, 7-Dec-2016)

****************

EXCERPTS

My Community Centre“: http://mycommunitycentre.com/.

Q. What is it that the CCAs want in the JOA? [CHW note – a separate FAQ question lists these same points as being “non-negotiable.”]

A. We believe that the CCAs and the Park Board want a JOA that works equally well for the Park Board and for each of our distinct communities. It is crucial that several areas of concern are addressed in the JOA before we can, in good faith, go to our respective boards of directors and our communities and recommend signing this agreement. The areas of concern are:
• Dispute resolution process
• Membership
• Financial costs
• Provisions for termination of the relationship
• Association governance and autonomy

“These areas need to be addressed in the JOA before we can recommend to our respective boards of directors that the agreement be signed.”

************

Kerrisdale Community Centre: http://www.kerrisdalecc.com/joint-operating-agreement-joa-important/. See also a good summary list of their articles here: http://www.kerrisdalecc.com/negotiations-with-park-board/

On-going discussions with Vancouver Park Board

In the campaign leading up to the November 2014 Civic Election, the NPA and Green party candidates for Park Board promised that, if elected, they would achieve a more effective working relationship with Vancouver’s Community Centre Associations (CCAs) and a Joint Operating Agreement (JOA) that meets the needs of the CCAs as well as the Park Board.

 

This is what has happened:

  • June 2015: KCCS, with 4 other CCAs, held mediated discussions with the Park Board; Park Board made unacceptable demands and few concessions to meet our needs.
    • CCAs are allowed to comment only on matters presented piece-meal by the Park Board;
    • The Park Board will incorporate only the feedback it chooses;
    • The schedule and process for receiving CCA inputs have been unreasonable;
  • September 10: The Park Board released its draft JOA (40 pages).
  • October 4: The Park Board advised that Associations that do not sign the new agreement will no longer have a role in the operation of their community centre.
  • November 4: 16 (out of 20) CCAs presented a JOA proposal to the Park Board. (This is posted on the KCCS website: http://www.kerrisdalecc.com/negotiations-with-park-board/). No response.
  • December 1: The Park Board released its revised JOA Proposal.
  • December 3: The CCAs raised a number of concerns about the December proposal
  • January 13: an amended proposal was released (50 pages). Legal advice is that CCAs should not sign this document. To view: http://www.kerrisdalecc.com/negotiations-with-park-board/
  • January 28: CCAs again raised a number of concerns to Park Board staff about latest proposal

This is what is coming:

  • February 8: The Park Board will meet at the Wosk Centre, 580 West Hastings Street at 7:00 pm to hear public comments on the proposal. Plan to attend. Show your support for your community centre!  Tell the Commissioners what you think!
  • February 16: Park Board will decide whether to approve the proposal. Should it be approved, there will be no opportunity to change it.

 

At this point, KCCS and many other CCAs are not likely to sign the proposed agreement.

Why? Based on the material received to date from the Park Board, the CCAs see too much that presents operational and legal difficulties:

  • Turning over to Park Board revenue from programs and services at each community centre;
  • Park Board can to implement policies at any time that could alter the terms of the agreement;
  • Conditions that violate the Income Tax Act for Registered Charities and the Societies Act;
  • Park Board can unilaterally cancel the agreement any time for any reason it chooses;
  • Overriding the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)(Canada); and
  • Allowing the Park Board to interfere in the CCAs’ internal affairs.

 

What you can do:

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s