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Community board of management arenas

Back story: On Monday Feb.22, 2010, City Council voted on whether to take away the ability of community boards of management at 8 arenas, to allocate ice time. Parks, Forestry and Recreation submitted this staff report.

Arenas' Public Skating Times

2010/2011 Ice Time Allocation for the Victoria Village Hockey League at Angela James Arena,(staff report), link, pdf.
Call for action from: Deirdre Norman
To: Women of Winter shinny hockey participants
Date: Feb 17, 2010

This email is long but worthy of your attention. The controversy over ice allocation policies by the city affects us all and has many facets.

It is urgent that you take action by writing to your city councilor immediately. Below are various links that will take you to the right place. I have included brief points that outline some of what is going on and a letter that you are welcome to cut and paste and/or adapt. When you write please copy all councilors (go to the following for their email (, the ombudsman Fiona Crean at [email protected]., and the following: General Manager Brenda Patterson at [email protected] - Deputy City Manager Sue Corke at [email protected] - Chair of Community Development and Recreation Committee Janet Davis at [email protected]

You can also go to for updates.

There is a city council meeting next week (agenda time to be confirmed) and I urge you to join me in making our presence felt by attending the meeting.

Ice Allocation: things you need to know

  • This is NOT a gender issue.
  • The 8 Board of Management rinks do not lose money unlike the city run rinks which lose 13,000,000.00 of our tax dollars
  • The proposed centralization of ice permitting will eliminate direct communication between these rinks and their communities.
  • The current structure of the BoM arenas ice allocation serves the needs of the entire community, while respecting the need for accessibility and diversity.
  • Centralization threatens existing community ice usage (that’s your and my league, our kids leagues, etc)
  • Centralization affects our parks as well as our rinks.
  • The jobs of the BoM staff will be in jeopardy
  • Brenda Patterson’s strategy of relocating managers and supervisors breaks the connection of communities to their parks/ rinks/arenas and threatens the many community partnered events and programs. The TWOW tourney is one, adult leagues are others.
  • If the model of BoM arenas work and the city rinks do not, why are we not advocating for all rinks to be BoMS? This would foster a sense of community in all areas.
  • Many city run rinks do not meet their own criteria for ice allocation.
  • Centralization of ice allocation has been tried in other cities and failed.
  • Centralization will bring in rink users who are not community members and just as possibly send us out to rinks that are not part of our neighbourhood. Travel is not the issue – community participation is.
  • If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Please write to your city councilor and tell them how much you love your parks and rinks, and how much the community spirit is reflected in the collaboration between staff and community. Ask them to keep Board of Management rinks the way they are!

Ice Allocation in the media

posted on February 25, 2010

New rules add 'transparency' to ice time allocation

Published: February 23, 2010
Source: Inside Toronto

Toronto Council has unanimously approved new rules for allocating time at all the city's rinks to make sure hockey leagues and others competing for the sometimes-scarce ice time will have a fair shot at getting their share.

"What we approved today unanimously was a process that ensures the city's ice allocation policy is implemented and there's a meaningful role for the boards of management at arenas," said Beaches-East York Councillor Janet Davis, who brought forward the policy as an amendment Tuesday, Feb. 23, morning.


posted on February 25, 2010

Toronto city council approves "compromise" ice allocation policy

By: Natalie Alcoba
Published: February 23, 2010
Source: The National Post

A contentious debate over ice allocation in Toronto has been settled, as city council unanimously supported a policy that will give community-run arenas a role in divvying up rink time, but city staff the final say.

Described as a "compromise" resolution that centralizes the process, Parks, Forestry and Recreation department will take in all applications for ice time at the 40 city-run arenas and the eight community-run arenas with boards of management.


posted on February 25, 2010

Leaside girls may still be shut out of North Toronto rink

By: Robyn Doolittle
Published: February 23, 2010
Source: The Star

The Leaside women’s hockey association wanted ice time at North Toronto arena. When they couldn’t get it, they went to the media and the mayor’s office.

Since then, there have been three months of angry debate and an extensive review of Toronto’s eight board-run rinks, culminating in a unanimous vote at Tuesday’s city council meeting to change ice allocation practices.


posted on February 25, 2010

Money shuts out girls’ hockey

Men’s leagues provide significant revenue to arena that limits access to female teams, records show

Published: Feb 22, 2010
Source: The Star

One of the eight independently run Toronto arenas accused of limiting access to girls’ and women’s hockey leagues earns significant revenues from male leagues, records show. North Toronto Memorial Arena, criticized for offering no prime time access to female teams, gets half of the Greater Toronto Hockey League’s gate receipts, close to $40,000 a year, the records show.


posted on February 23, 2010

Ice rink defends its spending

By: Donovan Vincent
Published: February 21, 2010
Source: The Star

Some critics say they are like fiefdoms.

Unlike the 40 rinks run by city hall, eight city-owned but independently run Toronto arenas have their own policies, procedures and business models that let them decide who gets ice time, when, and at what price. The autonomy enjoyed by these arena boards has paid off well as they take in hundreds of thousands in ice revenue each year.

But there is a push on now to ensure their financial freedom doesn’t trump fairness.

These arenas are at the centre of a controversy over accusations from girls’ and women’s hockey leagues who complain their teams are either being shut out, or have limited access to “prime time ice’’ available on weeknights and weekends.


posted on February 16, 2010

Cooler heads in the city's ice issue

Boards remain in control of arenas, for now

By: Peter Kuitenbrouwer
Published: Thursday, February 4, 2010
Source: The National Post

At 11 a..m. yesterday, 140 people crammed into Committee Room One at City Hall -- many of them in business attire -- a sure sign that our elected officials are meddling in sensitive territory.

And in Toronto, nothing is more sacred than a sheet of ice on which to skate.

Laura Wilson provided my favourite tear-jerker moment. Her son plays in the Greater Toronto Hockey League. Her younger daughter plays in the Toronto Leaside Girls Hockey Association. Her elder daughter wanted to join Leaside Girls, too, but that league, citing a lack of ice, couldn't accept her.


posted on February 16, 2010

City proposal to allocate ice time would put arenas in the red, say critics

By: Kelly Grant
Published: January 29, 2010
Source: Globe and Mail

Some say city is overreacting to threatened human rights complaint from Toronto Leaside Girls Hockey Association who claimed girls weren't getting their fair share

Toronto's community-run arenas may be Stanley Cup-calibre when it comes to managing finances, but not when it comes to satisfying municipal equity guidelines: Seven of eight missed the target this season. So Toronto's parks boss is recommending the city take over allocating ice time.

The proposal has alarmed volunteer directors at some of the arenas, who call the idea an overreaction to a threatened human-rights complaint from the Toronto Leaside Girls Hockey Association.


posted on January 31, 2010

Ice storm over rink time captures all that is wrong with Miller's regime

By: Christie Blatchford
Published: January 30, 2010
Source: Globe and Mail

The brouhaha over ice time at Toronto City Hall is a metaphor for all that is wrong with big government - probably all of them, but certainly Mayor David Miller's Toronto.

The mantras of Mr. Miller's government go roughly like this: Let us fix what is not broken and ruin what is working well; let us contrive to create a crisis where none exists; let us engage in a bogus "consultation" process when the fix is in; let us decry a lack of transparency in the enemy while working behind the scenes ourselves and, above all, let us give nary a thought to the poor, beleaguered taxpayer.


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Content last modified on June 24, 2010, at 09:30 PM EST