ROCK SPRINGS – Rock Springs youth teams won’t be paying higher fees to use Sweetwater School District #1 facilities after the Board of Trustees decided to waive the fees until further notice.
The board listened to a presentation from administration and heard public comment on the proposed fee hike at it’s month meeting Monday night, then decided to pass the policy but waive the fee increase for youth activities not associated with the district.
During a June presentation, the hike was proposed to help offset costs of maintaining district facilities and also covering custodial costs.
A systematic process allowing coaches and others to reserve practice spaces online is set to roll out on September 1. Facilities Director Dan Selleroli said that about 400 requests for facilities have already been made before the start of school.
Administrators also proposed different fees structures be established for “activities” such as Little League teams, adult groups and leagues, and non-school sponsored youth activities, and “events” such tournaments, concerts, competitions, etc.
The table below outlines several different scenarios and the custodial costs for each:
Superintendent Kelly McGovern said Chief Information Officer Stephanie Tollman has the system ready to go “and we just have this piece out there about fees.” She also said people requesting the facilities will also be able to pay with credit or debit cards.
Rock Springs Girls Softball Director Heather Andersen said that Youth Team #3 fees would “be pushing about another $300 more in registration fees onto our kids.”
“If you charge that to little leagues, you’re not going to have those kids playing sports at the upper ages,” Anderson warned. “Its a huge impact on our kids.”
High school teacher and Sweetwater Education Association chairman Mark Chollack suggested the board a sliding scale for teams with smaller numbers, rather than a flat rate for every team.
Board member Stephanie Thompson moved to pass the policy, but “waive all youth activity and organization fees, waive youth special event fees, waive custodial and staff fees for youth events, and honor all current Memorandum of Understandings (MOU’s).”
Thompson explained that “passing fees on can be a struggle for many families,” and the majority of the board agreed.
Trustee Max Mickelsen, the lone dissenter, said he felt the fees of about $100/month for teams was “a low level of buy-in” to help maintain the district’s facilities.
Following the discussion, the board voted 6-1 to pass Thompson’s motion. Communities members can begin to use the online registration portal to reserve district facilities beginning September 1.