Montgomery YMCA welcomes back Greenville

Published 4:55 pm Monday, August 31, 2009

Montgomery YMCA officials are busily preparing for Oct. 1, the date the Greenville facility on Academy Dr. is formally welcomed back into the fold.

Bob McGaughey, President and CEO of the Montgomery YMCA, said YMCA staff are evaluating the programs currently offered in Greenville, seeing which ones – if any – need to be phased out and what programs need to be added. McGaughey said programs will be modeled on what is currently being offered in Montgomery and scheduling will be consistent.

Probably the most recognizable change, he said, will be the installed card readers for patrons to swipe membership cards through when entering the building.

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“We keep records of all our members on a server and this is how we keep track of who enters our buildings at any given time,” said McGaughey.

Aside from also indicating when a member lapses in paying their monthly bill, chuckled McGaughey, the system will also streamline some of the administration involved in Greenville.

“A lot of the things they (Greenville) are currently doing by hand will be done through computer,” he said. “It will make everything else run smoother.”

Greenville patrons will also gain access to the Y’s Choice membership level, which for an increased fee, opens up the 11 YMCA facilities in Montgomery, Wetumpka and Millbrook for use.

“It was a very popular option when we were here the first time,” said McGaughey. “We had several of our members who lived in Greenville but worked in Montgomery and took advantage.”

The city’s YMCA split from Montgomery in 2006, but the monthly payment on a $900,000 loan – the remaining debt used to initially purchase the old Greenville Academy school building and surrounding land – was severely handicapping the organization’s ability to operate.

The city council approved a takeover of the YMCA facility in March and turned management over to Montgomery. The city also voted to enact a $1 occupancy tax on hotels, which is expected to cover the YMCA’s debt monthly debt obligation of roughly $8,000 per month.

“It’s a win-win situation,” said McGaughey. “It saves the YMCA in Greenville and keeps it viable.”