Rearden said the two pools "are really deteriorating[.]"
[...] Rearden said attendance has dwindled at the Jaycee and Water Tower Pools.
--Quotations from interim Park and Rec Director Patty Rearden, from Great Falls Tribune article here.
Priority Goals & Objectives - For The Upcoming Year
• Research costs/viability of spray grounds.
• Operate Jaycee and Water Tower pools during the 2005 season until major maintenance or mechanical needs preclude operating. The current budget reflects minimal maintenance.
--From page 227 of the City of Great Falls Operating Budget for Neighborhood Pools, online here. Emphasis added.
So let me get this straight. We need to close the Jaycee and Water Tower pools because they are deteriorating. They are deteriorating because city policy mandates that the city avoid performing maintenance on those pools. Does this seem a little circular to you? It certainly does to me.
So attendance is down. No kidding. Talk about a self-serving load of (*&*^%$#.
So now the city staff will "survey" city residents to find out what we want to do. This is a nice first step, and a welcome change. I ask, however, who are they going to survey? One nice first step might be traditional users of the neighborhood pools, including the directors of the kids summer camps (including Boys and Girls Club, the Rescue Mission, etc.) that make great use of them.
On a related note, while we are debating such an extensive bond issue for aquatics, I would like to see the city release financials for the White Water Elephant as its own "profit center." How much revenue can be directly attributed to the Wave Rider, as opposed to expenses (interest, maintenance, staffing, etc.) involved in its operation? Before we close our neighborhood pools, the city should have to tell us how much we are losing a year to own this luxury.