Shelbyville's youth will get the chance later this year to participate in a British soccer camp, after the city council signed off on an agreement Thursday evening.
The agreement is with Challenger Sports Corporation, and the best part of the deal is there will be no cost to the city.
Parks and recreation director Sylvia Pinson explained that the camp would take place the week of July 22-26. The camp will be able to cover different age groups, and the city's athletic coordinator Rob Smith has worked with the group before in another job setting.
"It's an innovative program, we've never had anything like this in Shelbyville before," she said last week.
Camps will be available to "first kicks" - 3-4 year olds - introducing the sport for one hour a day, and a mini soccer camp for 4-6 year olds that builds fundamentals and skills for 90 minutes.
A "half day camp" will also be held for ages 6-16 where emphasis is placed on individual skill development, core techniques and small sided games, as well as a half day team camp.
Pinson said she was going to work with the sports firm to lower the rates per player to match the demographics of the area. Families may also host visiting coaches.
Registration for the camp is done online, with help available at Shelbyville Recreation Center.
City manager Jay Johnson noted that when his generation was growing up, they never saw a soccer ball, but now "it's the sport - for both boys and girls."
The council also voted to begin the process to make a change in the city 401K plan. Last week, council members heard a presentation on how Shelbyville's plan was progressing and decided change is needed.
Shelbyville began offering the plan to its employees 18 years ago and in 2004 changed the retirement plan to 401K for all new employees, which Johnson said was "ahead of the game" compared to other communities.
The firm ING has been the administrator of the plan, and Johnson said that the fees the city has been paying "are above the industry average." Changing plans could save the city $60,000-$70,000 per year, and would be a significant savings over the period of a decade or more.
However, the latest report showed that the city had been "overweighed in the stock market," and took a hit in 2008 when the economic downturn began. Johnson said that ING had not been as responsive administratively as they should have been, and even with the challenges in the stock market, the return on investments "have been bad compared to that."
A large amount of the city's investments were just in a couple of funds, and those fund have not performed well, so the council decided that the city will end its relationship with ING, find a new third party administrator and find a new retirement investment plan for Shelbyville's employees to get a better return on their investments.
The resolution passed by the council authorizes Healthmart USA and city staff to issue a request for qualifications for both the administrator of the account, and the investment manager.