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Pool improvements underway

"Money that was raised for the Vanderzicht Memorial swimming pool in the 1999 levy is now being put to work at the pool.In its annual budget meeting Tuesday, the North Whidbey Parks and Recreation District, which operates the pool, approved a budget of just over $605,000 for the year 2001.The 2001 budget will contain November, 1999, levy money for the maintenance and operation and renovation of the pool, Jim Shullock, director of the North Whidbey Parks and Recreation District, said Friday. The next priority for renovation will be the pool's air conditioning system, Shullock said. But the levy money will be spread over six years and a number of improvements are planned in that time. We won't get it all done next year, but we are already starting to use [the levy money], he said.Work to renovate the pool's spas was started early this month, and Shullock expects construction to be finished on or before Nov. 17. Money for that came out of the budget for 2000, Shullock said. A public grand opening for the new, large spa is being planned for early next month.Also new at the pool is an automatic timing system with touch pads and a display board that went up early in September.It's a tremendous advance that's greatly appreciated, pool commissioner Harvey Prosser said. The new system, which cost more than $18,000, means more accurate scoring for the swim teams, Shullock said, and the swimmers names and times go up in lights. Money for the timing system came from donations, including a major contribution from Island Thrift. The community pitched in and helped us, Shullock said. No taxpayer money went into it. "

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