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Lawsuits could cause town's weight room to close
Written by Mark Lineberger   
Wednesday, 25 March 2009 13:42

The dreaded “L” word could soon see the Camp Verde Town Council discussing the future of the town’s weight room.

It’s “liability,” said town Parks and Recreation Director Lynda Moore. The town has no one around to supervise the gym where members of the public pay $15 a month to use weight lifting equipment.

Moore said the item could be brought before Town Council to discuss in executive session with the town attorney the risk the town faces if anything were to go wrong at the gym.

There’s also the Town Council’s general policy to avoid running any enterprise that competes with local businesses, Moore said, mentioning two private gyms in Camp Verde.

Before the issue goes before the Town Council, Parks and Recreation Commission Chairman and town councilwoman-elect Robin Whatley said she’d like the commission to look at the matter first.

“I certainly think this is something the Parks and Rec Commission would want to take a look at in order to come up with a recommendation for the Town Council,” Whatley said.

Whatley said that after a first look at the issue, she didn’t think the town’s gym should close.

“Once we take something away, it’s extremely difficult to ever get it back,” Whatley said.

Whatley said the town’s weight room was cheaper to use on a monthly basis than a private gym and thinks it’s a good alternative for people who possibly can’t afford higher membership fees.

As far as competition goes, one local gym isn’t particularly concerned.
Peggy Dickey with Verde Barbell said, in her opinion, the town’s weight room wasn’t providing competition.

“I really don’t think it’s that much competition,” Dickey said. “I really don’t mind the weight room being open.”

Dan Dundulis uses the town’s weight room around five days a week. Last week he agreed with fellow weight lifters using the town’s equipment that closing the gym would be a terrible idea.

Dundulis said that he enjoys the chance to use the equipment, and that he often brings in his own tools for maintenance and repair of the aging weights and exercise equipment.

“It’s affordable,” Doug Youngkin, another man who uses the equipment frequently, said.

Not only that, Paul Evans said, between reps, it doesn’t cost the town that much to maintain the weight room compared to the benefits it provides to the public.

The issue was placed on last week’s Town Council meeting agenda but was removed at the last minute. Moore said it could reappear before council in the near future.

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