INSIDE: DETROIT/A GREAT EXPO; BUSINESS/THE SINGLES BUSINESS;
HEALTH/ TWO OF HEARTS; NEXT GENERATION/ STUDENTS COURT ATTORNEYS
THE JEWISH NE S
26 SHEVAT 5755/JANUARY 27, 1995
Trying To Tread Water
JCC faces uncertain financial future
and role in community.
PHOTO BY GL ENN TRIEST
RUTH LITTMANN AND JENNIFER FINER STAFF WRITERS
or more than 11,000 Jews in As health club memberships decrease, so
metro Detroit, it's the place for does income for Jewish cultural and reli-
staying lean and healthy. The gious programming.
place to swim, lift weights and en-
"The health club very clearly produces
joy sports, all in Jewish sur- revenues that help drive the rest of the
Center's (Jewish) programming," says Dr.
But for the first time, financial prob- Morton Plotnick, JCC executive director.
lems have the Jewish Community Center "We are listening very carefully to what
struggling to trim down and reevaluate its our health club members are saying in
terms of (needing) increased service, in-
The Center recently announced layoffs creased cleanliness and increased pro-
and cuts to services in an attempt to cor- gramming."
Currently, the Center is losing
$50,000 a month. Cost-cutting mea-
sures, aimed at bringing losses down to
$10,000 monthly, will be implemented
next week, Mr. Bloom says.
Cuts to services will include closing
the Center's library, except on an ap-
pointment-only basis, operating the
Discovery Room in the same way, elim-
inating volunteer opportunities for se-
nior citizens, cutting programs for
teen-agers, young adults, singles and
Staff cuts will affect an unspecified
number of workers at the Maple/Drake
facility and Jimmy Prentis Morris build-
ing in Oak Park.
Leslie Bash, managing director of
JPM and director of adult services for
both buildings, last week explained the
Center's situation to JPM staff
"Anytime you go through something
like this, people get nervous," Ms. Bash
said. "I think our staff is a little anxious,
but it's not affecting their work."
In all, cuts are expected to save the
Center $310,000 over the next 12
months. Mr. Bloom says the JCC is in
Dave Miller works out on the StairMaster.
no danger of closing its doors, but he
stresses the importance of taking action
rect a $450,000 deficit projected for 1995. before the situation worsens.
Over the past two years, health-club mem-
The JCC has been running a deficit for
bership at the Maple/Drake and JPM fa- several years. But for about half a decade,
cilities has decreased by 200, which the board has voted to cover its $100,000
accounts for a loss of $160,000 a year.
to $200,000 yearly deficits with monies
"We are in a manageable situation right from a rainy-day fund, accumulated re-
now," says JCC president Douglas Bloom. serves generated over the years through
"It will get serious if we don't address those the Center's operations. Now, with only
issues that have caused us to lose health $200,000 left in that fund, the board is
seeking other methods for balancing the
Jewish cultural services, like the library budget.
and the Discovery Room, increase the
"All the decisions we've made have been
deficit because they cost money but gen- difficult," Mr. Bloom says. "The board is
erate no direct revenue, Mr. Bloom says. TREAD WATER page 14
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