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OP financials strong as fiscal year nears end

By Greg Ellison

(April 28, 2022) With a month remaining in its current fiscal year, the Ocean Pines Association is beating its budget by roughly $1.6 million, aided by positive revenue and expense figures for March.

General Manager John Viola and Office Manager Linda Martin reviewed the latest numbers for the board of directors last Wednesday.

Starting with March balance sheets, Martin said revenues were closing $124,000 ahead of budget. Revenue for the month had budgeted at approximately at $195,000, but closed out far ahead of that at $319,000.

Flipping to expenses, Martin reported that the association has spent $34,000 less than expected, with costs reaching $891,000 as compared to the $925,000 that had been budgeted.

Although net operating losses of $730,000 were forecast for March, the actual numbers ended at $572,000.

Martin credited monthly revenue increases of $124,000 in part to a stronger bottom line from amenities, including golf and food sales, while also noting decreased expenses in aquatics.

Viola said operational efficiencies and expense management have helped bolster revenues during the pandemic era.

“Overall, it’s management from this team of expenses throughout the year [and] throughout last year,” he said.

Viola said despite losing revenue related to health-safety mandates following the covid outbreak, those restrictions also cut costs in some instances.

“Sometimes the expenses went down over the year because we had to shut down programs [due to] … covid … or we didn’t have lifeguards,” he said.

In terms of departmental budgets for March, administration, which includes finance, public relations and general manager, led the pack at $62,400. Also ending March in the black was the Yacht Club at $35,100, Public Works at $29,300 plus Recreation and Parks at $25,300.

In terms of yearly totals, with only April remaining in FY21-22 the association is operating roughly $1.6 million ahead of budget estimates.

Leading the charge is Public Works at $411,000, with Golf Operations at $328,00, General Administration at $314,000, Aquatics at $192,000 and the Yacht Club at $131,000.

Viola attributed the $1.6 million budget surplus to strong numbers from amenities, with positive year-to-date numbers from Recreation and Parks, the Beach Club, Clubhouse Grille, marinas and racquet sports.

“We’re talking [up to] $900,000 for amenities,” he said. “That’s a big number and hopefully it will continue.”

Viola said a large percentage of amenity profits were attributable to food contactor Matt Ortt Companies and better draws at the Ocean Pines Golf Course.

Looking ahead, Viola envisions capturing higher revenues at the Manklin Creek Racquet Sports Center to continue the trend started with food and golf in recent years.

Through March, Racquet Sports is ahead of budget by $14,200, which ranks it at the bottom of amenities turning a profit.

Viola said with renewed resources being dedicated to spruce up the racquet center, including court surface repairs and new netting, along with expanded pickleball courts under construction, the site could experience higher future returns.

“Now that we’re giving them a product that they can sell [and] manage, they’re certainly seeing that with the results,” he said. “You’ll see more with the racquet sports as we go on.”