Pool needed, but so is restructuring
July 12, 2011 · Updated 3:06 PM
My family and I have lived in Oak Harbor for several years. Our children have taken swimming lessons at the pool and my husband regularly swims laps.
While we are ardent supporters of having a pool in our community, as property owners and voting taxpayers, we have several concerns when we look at voting for the upcoming levy.
First of all, face it, the pool is poorly managed. It is dirty, the locker rooms disgusting, the staff unhappy and rude. The swim team gets whatever it wants and other programs (like the high school program) suffer.
Secondly, in addition to being poorly managed, the pool wastes lots of money. While I realize operating costs are high, no money seems to be spent on keeping up the appeal of the place.
Lastly, the staff quality has declined. When we started using the pool a dozen years ago or so, it was a beautiful, clean facility with happy, professional staff. Now the staff are mismanaged, disorganized, not thoroughly trained and apparently not supported by management. More than once I’ve heard staff complain they would like to see changes but know they’ll not happen under current management situations.
My husband and I would almost be tempted to vote against the levy if it weren’t for the fact we feel our community needs a pool.
I urge the parks district board and voters to consider demanding a restructuring of the entire staffing at that facility should the levy pass. However, since there has been so much public negativity because of management’s inability to work with other programs or keep a positive atmosphere at their facility, I fear it may be too late to save the pool!