From the maintenance and operation tax levy the North Whidbey Parks and Recreation board provides about $600 yearly for each participant of the North Whidbey Athletic Association youth and adult swim clubs to subsidize the cost of swim coaches, swim lane time and other team expenses.
Most of these participants are from financially stable families who could pay the full cost of their NWAC participation.
Instead, property owners, through the NWPR real estate tax levy, provide about 40 percent of the club members funding from the yearly levy to subsidize these recreation clubs.
Nearly all the board members who voted for these subsidies have, or have had, family members on the swim clubs who benefit from this taxpayer largess, or are on the adult club themselves.
Now, some of these board members intend to replace the only unbiased monitor of pool spending, director Bill Walker.
Why? Because he had the audacity to fire the previous swim coach for inappropriate spending. The recentlyreleased state audit found the coach’s firing was justified.
Also, because he suggested to the board that, maybe, the swim clubs should be paying a little higher percentage of their actual taxpayer subsidized cost.
The parks and recreation board members in August voted down that increase, implying the levy renewal wasn’t a pressing concern at this time.