Read the Our view Sunday (Vote 'yes' on pools) and the previous one that for a 'no' vote on the library bond.
I agree and support the second view, vote 'no' on the library bond. I have different reasons to strongly consider a 'no' vote but I also would require a deeper understanding of how and why the main library got in the condition it's in to need those repairs.
I would ask voters to consider the following before voting 'yes' on the pools. First, the Ogden School District (OSD) took over the pools in 1990. They didn't spend a dime to build, construct, or purchase them. They were given to the OSD by Ogden City.
That's having the responsibility for 23 years. When the OSD took over ownership, they inherited the operation and maintenance of the pools. It appears to me, for whatever reason(s) they made the conscience decision to avoid or ignore the maintenance requirements.
Even if, as recently stated, the OSD now decided that they should concentrate money on their basic, reason for being, mission of educating students and all money should go to that endeavor, why should I now believe they will pay attention and allocate and expend the needed money and resources to maintain the pools?
The Our View states the pools are public and community assets. Since when do we put 'public' assets with a limited government entity for use by the general public? The schools, and to my knowledge the district, generally just operate nine months out of the year.
If the majority of the users are, or as the Standard-Examiner hopes in the future, non students, why have the responsibility with the school district?
I think pools are a great community asset and believe all people should be able to have some minimum level of swimming and water safety.
I don't know how old the Marshall White pool is but that pool, I'm told, is in much better condition than the two pools in question are. I believe its because of the attention and efforts of those responsible to maintain them. That's an inquiry I'd be interested in making comparing the age, condition, mechanical, and physical status of all three and finding out why such deterioration occurred in the school's pools.
Clearly, giving the OSD the benefit of the doubt, this old age of the pools had to be evident at some point within the last 23 years. Why, when brought up to the district and/or the school board (not clear here who bears more responsibility here for this situation), the extra money to keep up the required maintenance was not provided or why the superintendent or the school board refused or declined the request or the request then was not put before the public for additional funds?
Bottom line, the OSD had the opportunity to provide a community wide public service here and they failed, big time. As mentioned before, they should concentrate on their primary mission and when more successful than expected, then branch out to other areas.
To paraphrase the library bond proposal in the Our view, I would urge consideration of a 'no' vote on the pools proposition and once defeated begin efforts to determine who best to operate and maintain the pools starting back with the City of Ogden.
To do otherwise is to reward failure, negligence, and violation of the public trust.