Leisure centre users still waiting for refund

Regular users of the Peninsula Leisure Centre are still waiting for refunds for the closure of the pool one month after the pool re-opened.
They are unlikely to see any money for another week.
Access to some areas of the centre was limited while it was upgraded, and the pool hall was closed from Monday, June 19, to Sunday, June 25.
The users who have their fees regularly debited from their bank account were notified that the pool would be closed and that they would be credited for this.
However, despite planning the closure in advance, the council did not reduce the deducted payment accordingly.
Instead, it told the users it would take their normal deduction for June and keep the money for another two months before providing a refund.
Council chief Mr Rob Noble said this was “to ensure accuracy, and ensure customers were not impacted by any unforeseen changes to the timeline of the works”.
“All affected members were communicated with well in advance of the closure, and were automatically credited for the full length of the closure period, or given the opportunity to ‘timestop’ their membership for this period,” he said.
“Annual, upfront paying members also had their current membership extended by seven days.
“In the instance of the shutdown period, no members approached management to express concern about the proposed crediting approach.”
However, at least one resident did contact the Leisure Centre to complain, and were upset to learn that their complaint had not been recognised because they had not approached “management”.
Based on Mr Noble’s response, they again called the Leisure Centre, this time asking to speak to management.
The resident was told that no-one from management was available to take their call, and that if a call was put in to Council, the caller would only be referred back to Leisure Centre.
The Leisure Centre did not report complaints to the council.
If the caller wanted a complaint recognised, it would have to be put in writing.
Mr Noble said: “In June, the Peninsula Leisure Centre carried out a host of improvement and upgrade works, as part of Council’s $500,000 investment into one of the region’s premier recreational facilities.
“As a result of the works, members and visitors can now enjoy the refurbished sauna, steam room and showers, while the program pool has also been fitted with a new heating system.
“Other general repairs and painting were also undertaken during the upgrade, and new lighting was installed in the popular sports hall.”
The work has now been completed with all areas of the centre reopened to the public.

Media statement, 19 Jul 2017
Rob Noble, Central Coast Council
Reporter: Dilon Luke

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