Personal trainers Justin Daisy and Kirsty Wortley give the thumbs down to councils plan to charge people using the parks.
Personal trainers Justin Daisy and Kirsty Wortley give the thumbs down to councils plan to charge people using the parks. Alistair Brightman

Personal trainers furious with council's fitness fees

PERSONAL trainers using ratepayer land to hold exercise classes fear they may have to raise prices after being forced to pay almost $2000 in fees to the council annually.

A new policy from the Fraser Coast Regional Council will require businesses that use areas like the foreshore in Hervey Bay or Queens Park in Maryborough to apply for a permit.

They will have to pay a permit application fee of $309 and an annual fee of $1826.

The policy won't affect not-for-profit or community groups and Mayor Gerard O'Connell said it was about equity and fairness.

"It's a return of expenditure for council maintaining those parks," he said.

"We've been doing a considerable amount of consultation."

But Scarness personal trainer Justin Daisy told the Chronicle many trainers didn't make a heap of money and the annual fee of may be about half their income.

He and Kristy Wortley have just started the Come Step Into Life Fraser Coast fitness group.

They use the Scarness parkland to hold their training session.

With a cost of $10 per session or $15 a week, Ms Wortley said the low cost was designed to attract people with a low socio-economic background.

"That's partly why we get so many people is because of the small cost," she said.

"Nobody we've spoken with is happy about it."

Cr O'Connell said the new policy would bring the Fraser Coast in line with other local councils including the Sunshine Coast.

The policy

  • Annual permit fee of $1826
  • Permit application fee of $309
  • Not for profit groups such as Parkrun won't be affected