Sep 23 2011

Community Pool: “The Summer went Fast”

Recreation Commission Dips into City Pool Operation

On Wednesday, September 21, the Recreation Commission  received a report on the City takeover of the community pool operations.  Recreation Director Mark Delventhal reported, “I’m very pleased with our pool team.  It’s been a real challenge.  We had our hiccups, but I’m proud of how it’s gone.”

Joe Perez, the pool manager and Amanda Garcia, the assistant pool manager, have been replaced by interim pool managers.  Delventhal added that there were a few minor glitches with the staffing and an acid spill.  For the second year in a row, participation in swimming camps has been down.

Several observations by staff were offered to the Commission. For this first fall season of City operation of the pool, the arrangement with the School District and swim teams will remain the same as it was under management by Piedmont Swim Club.  Beginning next year, however,  the arrangement will have to change.  All of the programs, hours and fees will be evaluated, and a new program will be proposed to the Recreation Commission prior to the spring 2012 season.  Next year there will be no more season pass discounts.  Delventhal noted that even with these revenue enhancements next year, the total cost of the pool operation — which will approach $1 million in the initial year of takeover — will never be covered by fees.

The staff provided the Commission with ideas for future programs to increase usage of the pool during school hours.  Such plans might include programs for tots and parents, water aerobics, and a master swimming class.  The current midday usage of the pool is primarily by lap swimmers.

Tara Garside, the new Interim Manager as of Friday, September 9, was introduced to the Commission. Garside has a number of certifications including lifeguard, lifeguard instructor and title 22  first aid. She has worked for the East Bay Regional Parks District, serving  as head lifeguard at Lake Temescal for the past three summers.

A financial report of the City’s Community Pool operations  through September 30 will be presented to the City Council at the  October 17 Council meeting.

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