Pool Society hopes for continued support from City

Andrew Zwicker
By Andrew Zwicker
October 22nd, 2009

Monday night, representatives from B.C.’s only outdoor, society-run pool gave their thanks to council for the city’s continued support of the Rossland swimming pool. Speaking as a delegation at a Committee of the Whole (COW) meeting night, Michelle Tanguay of the Rossland Pool Society gave a quick recap of the unique relationship between her society and City Hall.

The pool receives much of its annual budget and support from the city in the form of a $26,000 annual operating grant, $5,000 capital improvements grant, $1,000 from the trails budget as well as some in-kind labour. This support helps the pool operate from late June through early September.

“The pool had a really god year this year,” said Tanguay. “We realized 100 people purchased the adult membership and 72 family memberships. That, plus our walk-up traffic, added up to quite a few people this year.”

In recognition of the long, hot summer Rossland enjoyed this year the pool society helped boost its numbers and kept Rosslanders cool longer by extending the schedule.
“The pool remained open a bit longer this year, and it was really well received,” added Tanguary. “We stayed open for the first two weeks of September partly because the weather was still so hot and beautiful.”

The relationship between City Hall and the pool got a bit closer this summer with the newly installed heat recovery units which were operating for their first season. Taking advantage of the heat exhaust coming out of city hall’s air conditioning units, the new system assists in heating the pool’s water. Among other capital improvements planned in the coming years is an adaptation and expansion of that system to also heat the pool’s shower water with green sources.

“Thanks to the city of Rossland for keeping your air conditioning on!” laughed Tanguay.

Other projects that will utilize the grant money in the upcoming year include a re-tiling of the shallow end of the pool, refinishing the concrete floors in the change rooms, and a replacement of the water boiler for the change room showers.

One potential challenge facing the pool society next season is the broken-down regional recreation system and the struggles between the cities of Trail and Rossland over the matter.

“Next year, our local pool may have to adapt to help fill some gaps due to the changes in regional recreation. We are already preparing to help meet the possible extra demand and financial gains and costs associated with that if it is still the case.”

After several questions on the workings of the pool’s budget and current deal with the city, Tanguay reminded council that for the money the city provides the pool, it pays them back with the faces of the many smiling swimmers in town. Ultimately the delegation’s message to council was one of gratitude for continued support of the facility and a request that the relationship stay intact through next year’s budget deliberations.

“We’re not here to actually ask for any money but just for continued assistance from the city at the same level,” noted Tanguay.  

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