Significant loss for GMDC

  • Dec. 11, 2009 12:00 p.m.

The Greater Massett Development Corporation’s financial position deteriorated significantly in 2008, and it recorded a loss on investment income of just over $486,000. That contrasts with a $42,000 profit the year earlier, even more so with a $453,000 profit in 2006. The problem, of course, is the financial marketplace which has diminished the value of most, if not all, investments over the past year. GMDC’s trust funds value continued their decline. In 2007,they were worth $4.7-million. During 2008, they declined $900,000, to $3.8-million. “GMDC still lost significant dollars in 2008,” chair Trevor Jarvis said, “the investments we have were subject to the same market forces in the last year and a half or so. They are just now beginning to recover to where they were a year and a half ago.” The group’s accounting firm, Carlyle, Shepherd and Co says the income loss may improve by $250,000 by the end of the current fiscal year at the end of this month. Despite a drop in spending of $291,000, in part a result of closing the rec centre just over a year ago, GMDC still lost $815,904 in the year ending December 31, 2008. That’s more than the loss of $622,000 the year before, but most is explained by the loss of $486,000 in investment revenue. After the financial report was presented to the meeting, attended by about 18 people, discussion focused around two things, hopes for a new rec centre with a pool and the possibility of opening the old pool temporarily for swimming lessons. Those attending heard directors say that despite their best efforts to find funding for a new centre, they have so far drawn a blank. GMDC chair Trevor Jarvis said the province is interested in funding half the $10-million or so needed, but that without another partner to cover the balance, the new centre cannot be built. He said GMDC hopes to arrange meetings with several ministers in Ottawa in the new year in the hopes of getting a commitment to fund the centre. “We are looking at every funding opportunity that comes along,” he said. “We are looking for 100-percent capital costs (to be funded) he said. However, it’s not an easy battle. “Funding is drying up everywhere, director John Disney told the meeting, “and there is a huge vacuum coming because the province is broke, Ottawa is broke. If you hear of any (funding) that sounds promising, phone Trevor or me right away.” He also said Ottawa is proving more difficult that first thought, and that MP Nathan Cullen no longer seems to be putting much energy into the project. On the possibility of the pool opening temporarily for swimming lessons, GMDC has agreed that QCI Rec can do that, as long as no GMDC money is involved. QCI Rec’s Julia Brobbel is going ahead with the plan, hoping to open the pool for two months, either April and May or September and October. “I’m trying to remain positive about it to provide that space for the kids,” Ms Brobbel said. The Observer will have a full story on this possibility in coming weeks.