It has become clear in reporting on the closing of overnight camping at Pointe Des Chenes, the city wanted to save money and trim non-core services. Mayor Christian Provenzano said it best in a response to a constituent.
“To put it simply, we aren’t in the business of running campgrounds,” said Provenzano.
Councillor Matthew Shoemaker stated during the Feb 8, 2021 meeting that investing the $275,000 would only benefit “a couple of 100 folks, 120-150 families, made up of a couple 100 to 200 people all together.”
So two of the questions campers have posed is, “What other ‘non-core services’ does the city have? And what about the marinas?
The 2019 capital budget approved the replacement of a significant amount of infrastructure at the Roberta Bondar Marina at an amount of $800,000. The funds were used to replace the docks.
The Roberta Bondar Marina, according to drawings, now has a capacity for 48 boats to be tied up at any given time, so a few hundred people.
If you look through the budgets for the past few years, the city has operated both Marinas combined at a loss to the taxpayer. More specifically, since 2018 the total loss appears to amount to $79,948.
In 2018, the Bondar Marina operated at a loss of $31,714 whereas the Bellevue Marina saw a profit of $12,400.
In 2019, the Bondar Marina operated at a loss of $26,775 and the Bellevue Marina at a loss of $416.
in 2020, the year of COVID, the Bondar Marina operated at a loss of $36,425 and the Bellevue profited by $2,982.
Although not directly profitable to the city, the Lions club has stated it gave approximately $50,000 in revenues earned from the park to local charities each year.
SaultOnline is still waiting for the Freedom of Information request from the city which we expect to have sometime before May 1, 2021. Stay with us as we continue to follow-up on the PDC file.