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South Pittsburg swimming pool to remain closed again this summer

At Tuesday night’s city meeting in South Pittsburg, it was announced that the city’s public pool at Loyd Park would remain closed again for the 2017 summer season due to budget cuts.

The pool, built in 1964, has been a popular summer attraction for those in the community and surrounding communities since it first opened.

Residents attending the meeting spoke up when they were given the floor asking why the city made the decision, reminding those on the commission that it left few options for area children with things to do over the summer months.

South Pittsburg Mayor Virgil Holder said the cost to operate the pool was just too high, citing the city being over budget.

The pool reportedly has been a notorious money drain for the city. Officials say that even with charging an admission, the pool has been known to lose $7,000 to $10,000 each year for a number of years.

Some residents questioned the Mayor about the property tax prices that have in some cases doubled for home and property owners, asking where that money is going.

The Mayor replied that he’s aware that South Pittsburg has the highest property tax rates in the county, but the City’s budget for last year was $269,000 in the red and was also in the red the prior year, too.

The Mayor stated that cuts had to be made and some items had to be cut in order to balance the budget for this year and get the city back on track financially.

The pool was closed in 2013 following flooding that caused widespread damage across the city prior to its opening. While the pool only sustained some minor damage, it was in need of many required upgrades to make it ADA compliant for those with handicaps — including railings, ramps, and other items totaling close to $20,000 in needed upgrades.

In addition to the requirement to bring it into ADA compliance, the pool needed many upgrades to the pump and filtration systems.

At that time, former Mayor Jane Dawkins said the city was looking into a ‘splash pad’, which many cities and municipalities were installing rather than repairing or installing new city pools. No further discussion or plans were made for such in the city.

The pool remained closed in 2013 awaiting those needed repairs. No further comments or timeline was given on exactly when or if the pool would be reopened for 2018. Many

No further comments or timeline was given on exactly when or if the pool would be reopened for 2018.

 

 

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Permanent link to this article: https://marioncountymessenger.com/2017/05/south-pittsburg-swimming-pool-to-remain-closed-again-this-summer/