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Ops Community Centre

City approves study on repurposing Ops Community Centre for other indoor sports

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City approves study on repurposing Ops Community Centre

By a unanimous vote, council approved a staff study due back at the end of the summer that will flesh out the specifics and costs of converting Ops from an arena to a multi-sport indoor sports destination.

The ‘new Ops,’ if accepted, would be able to accommodate indoor soccer, volleyball, pickle ball, ultimate Frisbee, box lacrosse, and other non-ice-related games.

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Questions raised about procedural errors in council’s decision to close Ops arena

in Municipal by
Councillors Kathleen Seymour-Fagan, Andrew Veale, Doug Elmslie and Tracy Richardson voted along with Mayor Andy Letham to close Ops permanently.

Council’s sudden vote in November 2020 to close the Ops Community Centre violated council’s own policies, according to Heather Stauble. The former Kawartha Lakes councillor and former chair of the board of directors of the Kawartha Conservation says a two-thirds vote was required to reverse a previous council decision and close the arena. The vote was 5-4 in favour of the closure, with Mayor Andy Letham casting the deciding vote.

“Council should not have made the decision to close the arena permanently (the way it did),” said Stauble, noting that the move reversed a 2016 council decision. “The most recent decision was done without any notice to the public and without consultation with the Ops community.”

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Letham casts deciding vote to close Ops Arena; Locals hope to reverse decision

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When Deputy Mayor Patrick O’Reilly contacted Ron Pearson and Murray Walden to inform them council had voted 5-4 to close Ops Community Centre, Pearson and Walden were shocked.

The two men, who had been instrumental to the operation and construction of Ops before amalgamation in 2001, are waiting for a meeting with Mayor Andy Letham to push for a reversal.

However, it was Letham who cast the deciding vote to close the aging arena.

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