YMCA to take over WIRAC’s management

THE management of Warwick Indoor Recreation and Aquatic Centre is set to be taken over by Brisbane-based YMCA.

Councillors agreed to award a four-year contract to the Young Men's Christian Association at a confidential council meeting in Stanthorpe on Tuesday of this week.

The Daily News was told of rumours of the deal yesterday and sought confirmation from the council.

The contract, which begins on November 1, will save council $500,000 in costs and is worth more than $2 million to YMCA.

Southern Downs Regional Council has been looking at different ways in recent months to operate the WIRAC facility, which has been the subject of controversy.

Acting CEO David Tuxford confirmed yesterday that YMCA would take over the management of WIRAC.

"Council advertised for tenders to manage Warwick Indoor Recreation and Aquatic Centre and have assessed these over the past couple of weeks," he said.

"The contract has been thoroughly researched and analysed to ensure WIRAC services will be maintained, as well as encouraging the YMCA to make improvements in managing the centre.

"No decision about future arrangements for WIRAC have been made beyond the terms of the contract with YMCA."

WIRAC was first leased out to Waves on Warwick back when the recreational facility was built in the 1990s.

The venture proved unsuccessful for manager Darryl Leahy, which is when council stepped in and took back control of the centre's management.

WIRAC has been managed in recent times by the council's Manager of Community Facilities, Michael Bell.



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