PITTSBURG -- The Pittsburg Yacht Club is once again sailing a steady financial course now that it's current with a city loan it took out several years ago to make clubhouse improvements.

The club had missed 11 monthly payments of $2,696 on a $256,694 redevelopment loan balance as a result of club revenues slowing in response to higher gas prices reducing the number of Delta boaters cruising in to visit the club and declining membership.

"We are in business and not going anywhere," said George Iaconis, a member and former yacht club commodore. "We are presently current on our loans, and making all payments. That's due to cuts made in our operating budget and member donations."

A fundraiser was also held to raise revenues and a fundraising dinner and auction is scheduled for Nov. 3.

A major cost-cutting measure included laying off two part-time bartenders, a decision that was made collectively by club officials.

"We fired our bartenders and went to voluntary bartenders," said Iaconis, adding that most yacht clubs turn to members to serve drinks. "It saved us enough to make the payments. Between the cost of insurance, workers' compensation, and employment taxes and wages, it's about $3,000 a month for two bartenders."

The club also reduced its power consumption, he said.

Turning to an all-volunteer bartending crew been a plus, said Iaconis.

"It is fun," he said, adding that the club is also signing up new members. But there is always room for more, which is why the club is offering the rest of the year free when a single or family membership is purchased for 2013. A yearly membership goes for $320, while $500 is the rate for a family membership. Membership does not require owning a boat.

The club is located on city-owned land and pays a percentage of its gross payments in lease payments to the city. There are 176 members, including three who joined this month. Club activities include twice-weekly clubhouse dinners and monthly cruises to local yacht clubs.

Reach Eve Mitchell at 925-779-7189.

Follow her on Twitter.com/EastCounty_Girl.

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