Administration of Recreation and Culture Programs and Services Procedure

Purpose statement

This procedure establishes requirements related to the administration of Recreation and Culture programs and services, including: payment terms and conditions, transfers, withdrawals, extensions and cancellations.

Scope

This procedure applies to Recreation and Culture programs, memberships and facility rentals offered to the general public by the Recreation and Culture Department or the Parks and Open Space Department.  This procedure does not apply to administration at The Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts, gallery space at Queen Elizabeth Park Community and Cultural Centre and the Oakville Public Library.

Procedure

General administration

Non-residents

A surcharge as outlined in the Recreation and Culture Rates and Fees document will be levied on all Recreation and Culture programs and memberships utilized by participants whose primary residence is outside of the Town of Oakville.  Non-residents cannot register for programs until 10 days after the start of registration for Oakville residents.  Non-residents may purchase Memberships at any time. Facility rental requests will follow the appropriate seasonal timeline and allocation procedure.

Proof of age

Minimum and maximum age requirements may be stipulated for program registrations and memberships to ensure the safety and enjoyment of all participants.  Facility rental permits will only be issued to individuals 18 years or age and older. Recreation and Culture reserves the right to request proof of age for registrants enrolling in programs or purchasing membership products.

Support person for persons with a disability

If a person with a disability requires support in order to participate in a Program or utilize services such as membership, a support person will be admitted to the Program at no charge.  If the support worker is accompanying an individual to an off-site trip, extra fees charged to all registered participants will also be charged to the support worker, if applicable.  Persons with a disability may request an “express pass” to easily identify the need for a support person at no charge.

Declined payments and failure to pay

Payments which have not been honoured by the bank must be rectified immediately upon notification by the town. The town reserves the right to cancel the registration /membership/ facility rental permit or to revoke privileges until full payment is received. A Corporate administration fee, established by Financial Operations will be charged for each returned payment.

Collection of Outstanding Fees

Recreation and Culture staff have the responsibility for collection of all outstanding account receivables from registrations, bookings and memberships.  Other than some payment terms, the majority of fees are collected in advance of the program, membership or facility rental, therefore collection of outstanding fees should be minimal.  If attempts by phone, e-mail and/or post mail are unsuccessful, a collection service will be utilized to collect defaulted fees.  Financial Operations are to be notified of any accounts going to collection. Under the Financial Control procedure F-FOC-001-004 and the Municipal Act, 2001 Section 304, staff has the authority to add service fees to all accounts going to collection. In addition, a full aging and reconciliation report must be provided to the Manager, Accounting Operations on a quarterly basis, and all write offs must be approved by Financial Operations.

Registration and membership administration

Program registrations will be accepted on-line, by touch-tone telephone, by fax, by mail or dropped off at Recreation and Culture facilities. Self-serve program registrations processed on-line or touch-tone telephone will provide immediate confirmation of registration. Processing of faxed, mailed or dropped off registrations will begin on the published start date of registration in indiscriminate order with confirmations being provided immediately upon processing if an email exists on the customer account, or mailed within 2 weeks.

Participants can continue to register for programs available for registration after the program start date unless a registration end date has been added to the program.

In the event that a program is full, clients may be added to the waitlist. If space becomes available, the first person on the waitlist will be contacted and offered the space, by phone or email. The client’s response to accept and provide payment to confirm program enrolment is required within 24 hours, after which time, the offer will be cancelled and the next client on the waitlist will be contacted.  The requirement to respond within 24 hours will be communicated in the phone call or email.

Memberships may be purchased at any time during regularly posted customer service operating hours at community centres, pools and select arena locations offering the particular activity or at Town Hall. Purchases must be made in person.

Payment Terms

All fees charged are approved as part of the annual budget process.  Approved rates and fees documents can be found online at oakville.ca.  Full payment of program registration and membership fees must be provided or scheduled at the time of purchase.

Scheduled payment options

Early registrants to week-long, full day camp programs offered in the summer may pay by preauthorized credit card. Payments are due on June 1 for all July fees, and on July 1 for all August fees.

Teams enrolled in the Oakville Recreational Hockey League, (ORHL) have the ability to schedule payments throughout the season.  For groups registering as teams, the individual identified as the captain is responsible for payment collection from their team and remitting payments to the Recreation and Culture department.

  • For Fall/Winter Season - An initial payment of $1000.00 is due at time of registration.  The remaining payment will be scheduled and equally paid: October 1, November 1,    December 1.
  • For Summer Season - An initial payment of $1000.00 is due at time of registration.  The remaining payment will be scheduled and equally paid: May 1, June 1, July 1.

Pre Authorized Payment Plan (PAPP) also available for annual fitness memberships.  An initial payment is due on the date of purchase.

Pro-rated fees

Program fees for registrations received after the start date of the program will be pro-rated for the remaining classes of the program.

Payment types

Payment options are by VISA, Mastercard, debit, cash, cheque, pre-paid gift certificate, fee assistance program credit or account credit. Cheques will only be accepted by mail or drop off. Post-dated cheques will not be accepted. Cash is only accepted for in-person transactions. Some locations are unable to accept all payment types.

Withdrawals, transfers and membership extensions

Timelines

On-line program transfers and withdrawals can be done up to 4 days prior to the start date of a program. A full credit will be placed on the client’s Recreation and Culture family account.  Transfers and withdrawals after this date must be processed at Town Hall.

General programs

Transfer and withdrawals for general programs can be made by speaking with a Customer Service Representative in the Recreation and Culture Department between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday prior to the start time of the third scheduled class. The client may leave a pro-rated credit on account for the remaining classes of the program or receive a pro-rated refund for the remaining classes of the program. Refund requests are subject to an administration fee

Camps and workshops

Transfers and withdrawals from camp programs that operate daily during the summer, March Break and Winter Break and workshops can be up to 4 days prior to the start date of the program.  A full credit will be placed on the client’s Recreation and Culture account.  Refund requests are subject to an administration fee

Note

Requests made to the program instructors or left on voicemail will not be considered sufficient notice.  The effective date of transfer or withdrawal is the date of receipt of notice provided to the town, regardless of the date the participant actually ceased to attend. Refunds will be approved by Recreation support staff and refunds will be processed in the same manner as the payment was taken. In the case of a cheque refund, any required cheque will processed by Accounting Operations as part of the weekly cheque run process.

Memberships

Refund/withdrawal requests can be made at any time.  A prorated credit will be left of the customer account for future use.  Refund requests are subject to an administration fee.

Membership Extensions

Membership extensions may be permitted after the request is reviewed by the Coordinator.  Extensions will only be permitted once during the term of a membership, to a maximum of 30 days.

Transfers

A transaction is considered a transfer when a participant withdraws from one program and immediately registers into another program or service. The participant will be required to pay the pro-rated fee for the program into which he or she is transferring, less the value of the unused portion of the first program. If the new fee is lower than the fee previously paid, the difference will be returned to the customer’s account.  No administration fees are charged for program transfers.

Cancellations by the town

In the event that a program or service is cancelled by the town, every effort will be made to accommodate the participant in another program or through another service. If there is no other program or service which is satisfactory to the participant, a refund may be provided and no administration fee will be charged.  Every effort will be made to reschedule single program date cancellations.  If the participant is unable to attend the rescheduled date, the single date fee will appear as an account credit for future use.  Refunds will not be provided, unless the credit is greater than $20.00.

Missed classes

Participants are to attend all classes as scheduled for the program in which they are registered. In the event that a participant is unable to attend a scheduled class(es) during the program session, make-up class(es), refunds or credits for the missed class(es) will not be provided.

Exceptions

Transfers and withdrawals cannot take place after these deadlines unless the participant is transferring or withdrawing due to dissatisfaction with the program, provided the reason for the dissatisfaction has been thoroughly investigated by the appropriate programming staff and manager and has been found to be justified. The manager, or designate will assess the appropriate refund and/or application of the administration fee.

Facility rental administration

Seasonal permits

A timetable for request submission and permit confirmation deadlines is set annually, outlined in The Corporation of the Town of Oakville –Policy MS-FAC-001 Facility Allocation. Current clients in good standing are contacted and requested to submit their requirements to the Booking Clerk before each season’s deadline.

Casual permits

Short term or single use bookings are available following the permit confirmation deadline for each season, on a first come, first served basis.

Special event

Special events may include, but are not limited to festivals, parades, walkathons, races, tournaments, meets, competitions, street dances, theatrical, filming, picnics, and sidewalk sales taking place on streets and/or using municipal parks and facilities.  The Town of Oakville Parks and Open Space Department provides a fee waiver in the form of fee reductions to community groups for specific special events and services that benefit the community at large.  Procedure MS-SPR-002-003 provides eligible community groups a fee assistance program for approved special event permits that use town operated facilities and or services through the Parks and Open Space and Recreation and Culture departments

Leases and license agreements

All fees charged to the client are approved as part of the annual budget process.   To ensure facility space is reserved and that accounting is managed using existing systems, all leases will be entered into permitting software once the signed lease/license agreement has been provided to permitting and scheduling staff.  All cheques for leases and license agreements will be held by Financial Operations, to be consistent with other lease agreements.  Financial Operations are to be informed if any lease changes are being considered.

Cancellations

All general permit cancellations require a written notice to the town, with a minimum 14 days’ notice prior to the date(s) affected, otherwise full billing costs will occur. Any tournament or special event bookings of more than 8 hours in a 24-hour period require forty-five days’ notice.   No cancellations will be accepted on any bookings confirmed within 14 days of the booking date. Any credit balances will be refunded, if requested, at the end of the season. Refund requests are subject to an administration fee.

  • Cancellations by the town: The Town reserves the right to cancel any permit, and close any function if deemed necessary, and/or retain full or portions of any deposit provided.
  • Inclement weather: Cancellation of events due to inclement weather will not be considered.  Event planners understand that holding an event outside may be impacted by uncontrollable factors.
  • The town reserves the right to close facilities and sports fields at any time due to wet or unsafe conditions. All closures will be posted on oakville.ca, and all attempts will be made to contact the designate for all affected user groups as soon as possible. For updated information, individuals may call 905-338-4398. Updates will be posted by 1 p.m. daily.  Efforts will be made to reschedule cancelled dates.

Insurance requirements

All permits require proof of $2 million dollars liability insurance naming the Town as additional insured, or $5 million dollars for any event with inflatables, special events or alcohol related events. If a permit holder invites a 3rd party vendor to be on-site during their permitted time, approved by the town, the 3rd party vendor must also provide proof of $5 million dollars liability insurance naming the Town as additional insured. The town offers competitive rates for required coverage by partnering with two insurance companies that specialize in offering insurance for sport and recreational activities.

Facility booking payment terms

All fees charged to the client are approved as part of the annual budget process. Rates and fees documents can be found online.

All permits, with the exception of room rentals over $100, must be signed and paid in full or scheduled, at the time of booking to reserve location(s). Social and alcohol related events require an initial payment and may require a Damage Deposit at the discretion of the Facility Manager or designate.

If the rental agreement involves an event where alcohol will be served, the Facility may be put on tentative permit/hold for up to 14 days to allow time for the customer to meet the Conditions for Serving Alcohol outlined in Alcohol at Special Occasion Permitted Events procedure MS-PER-003-001.

Scheduled payments for facility bookings allows the client to make payment for the upcoming months facility costs on the last day of the previous month.

Minor Sport CORE groups are provided the option, due to the large volume of hours booked and amendments made during any given time, to make payment based on an account statement printed at the start of the current month.  Payment is due immediately.  All group activity is monitored by the permitting and scheduling department.

Applicable extra fees will be added to the permit, including but not limited to SOCAN, Re:Sound, hydro, stages, set-up time, picnic tables, etc.

Alternate payment terms

Alternate payment terms may be established for an individual permit, with written approval from the appropriate director, when, in the opinion of the Director of Recreation and Culture, or the Director of Parks and Open Spaces, the customer has an established history of meeting payment commitments and the magnitude of the dollar value of the permit does not allow the customer to pay in advance.

Definitions

Express pass: means a free membership, extended to Persons with Disabilities to allow for support worker to attend programs and services.

Family account: an individual may only be the main contact of a single family account, however could be listed as a client under several accounts.  The main contact is considered the individual most responsible for the account, including all payment and refunds.  Account changes received by phone or in person will only be accepted by the main contact.  Account inquiries received by phone or in person may be provided to individuals listed on the account after personal identity is confirmed.

Membership: means all recreational memberships, passes and swipe visits, such as, but not limited to, fitness, swimming, skating and personal training. Memberships are limited to a fixed term and have a specific expiry date, with the exception of swipe visits, which are programmed for a fixed number of visits and do not expire.

Organization Account: organization accounts are created for groups that are renting facilities on behalf of their members or registrants.

Program: means all recreation and culture programs, including sports leagues, arts and culture programs and contracted programs/program partnerships, but excludes drop-in or pay-as-you-go programs.

Special event: used to describe a broad range of activities planned to mark  special occasions or to achieve specific social, cultural or economic objectives.  The term is applied to civic, provincial or national celebrations, cultural performances or gatherings, sports contests and a wide range of commercial or corporate functions.

Facility booking

Permit: means a formal issuance, by the town, to a person or group for the rental of space under the standard terms and conditions of the town and may include additional charges for costs incurred for services over and above the facility rental fees. “Facility” means meeting rooms, auditoriums, pools, arenas, gymnasiums, museums, parks, picnic areas, sports fields, and other facilities which are owned or operated by the Town of Oakville. It does not include, cemeteries, harbours, theatres or properties which are leased or under a management and operation agreement for long-term use.

A permit listing the date(s) booked is issued for all facility rentals. The terms and conditions for use must be accepted by the customer prior to use of the facility. Failure to acknowledge a permit or to comply with the terms and conditions of a permit may result in the town cancelling the booking. Permit terms and conditions are specific to the facility type listed on the permit.

Procedure details

Procedure Number: MS-REC-004-001
Parent Policy: MS-REC-004
Section: Municipal Services
Sub-Section: Recreation Services
Author: Recreation and Culture department
Authority: CAO
Effective Date: 2015 Jun 29
Review by Date: 2020