Tuesday evening the Maricopa City Council unanimously approved a resolution that will change fees at Copper Sky Multigenerational Center at their regularly scheduled meeting.
The new fees will impact the use of day passes while promoting six-month and annual memberships in an effort to make Copper Sky more sustainable and offer more services to citizens.
“While we probably didn’t please absolutely everybody, I think we generally reached a consensus,” Community Services Director Nathan Ullyot said of conversations with city committees. “For the most part, we have some support for these schedules.”
With all the changes in membership costs, the city is adding a scholarship program that gives discounts on memberships and classes based on income levels.
Seniors automatically get a 10-percent discount but can get further discounts based on income levels. If seniors qualify for the scholarships and the regular senior discounts, they could save up to 50 percent off their memberships.
Seniors will no longer have a separate price point.
Some seniors may also qualify for assistance through their health insurance programs.
The scholarship program has two discount levels of 20 and 40 percent off membership costs. The application for a scholarship is simple and only one-page long.
In applying for a scholarship, the city asks for a tax return, a current income statement and proof of residence like a utility bill or driver’s license. Copies of the documents will also be returned or destroyed after application processing, which should take two weeks or less.
Councilmember Nancy Smith said her earlier concerns over the fee changes were centered on the senior rates.
“I felt so strongly about this concern, that I wanted you to have lots of people to talk to,” she told Ullyot. She thanked Ullyot for presenting the information in many settings, including city committees. Smith also said senior advocate Joan Koczor was a vital part of getting the word out and starting strong communication between residents and City Hall.
Members will also save with discounts on sports programs, like aquatics classes or enrichment classes, as part of their membership. They also receive free event parking and fun-zone passes. Members also receive 10 guest passes per year.
Rates will be categorized at three levels for Copper Sky – member, resident and non-resident.
Copper Sky has about 6,800 members with approximately 2,000 senior members.
The Council also heard a presentation by Denyse Airheart, Maricopa’s director of Economic Development, on plans for an 18-acre development around Copper Sky that will include La Quinta Hotel, 620 units of multifamily housing, a 172-unit Morning Star Assisted Living Center and 53,000 square feet of new retail space.
Airheart unveiled the $146-million plan at the Jan. 9 special meeting between the Maricopa Economic Development Alliance (MEDA) and Maricopa City Council.