Bega Valley Shire Councillors will vote on proposed changes to operating hours at the Eden Pool next Wednesday’s Council meeting.Bega Valley Shire Councillors will vote on proposed changes to operating hours at the Eden Pool next Wednesday’s Council meeting.
Under the proposal, which Council representatives discussed with around 10 members of the local community at a meeting last Thursday, the pool will remain open seven days per week, with its hours altered to cater for a variety of pool users.
“We are proposing that on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, the pool will open at 10am and close at 6pm,” acting group manager for community relations and leisure Simon Schweitzer said.
“We’re also proposing that early morning swimmers be catered for on Tuesdays and Thursdays, when the pool will open at 6am and close at 9am, and then open again at 2pm and close at 6pm.
“Our thanks go to those who attended the meeting and contributed to the discussion, and the next step for us is to present the proposed operating hours to Councillors during the September 10 meeting, where a final decision will be made.”
Councillor Tapscott said the public meeting was a good opportunity for pool users to have their say.
“The people who attended represented a good cross-section of pool users, including the people who like to do early morning laps, the squad swimmers and social swimmers,” she said.
“We outlined the situation with the three pools council is managing and they need to be sustainable; not profitable, but sustainable.
“These pools are at points in their lives where a lot of investment needs to be made into their longevity.
“We’ve invested about $50,000 into the Eden Pool, but we still need to look at it and ensure we can continue to use it when it needs to be used, and not fund it when nobody needs to use it.
“We had to identify those peak usage times, who was using it and for how long.
“[After doing that] we’ve come up with a timetable to allow everyone to use it to do what they need to do.
“The proposal will now go to Council and then it will be put out for public comment.”
Cr Tapscott said trial operating hours earlier in the year had demonstrated the community’s ongoing need for the pool.
“They were grateful; we ran a pilot project and that bore out that there are lap swimmers,” she said.
“They said, ‘You open it at 6am and we will come’, and they did.
“Most people understood the constraints that we have.
“If you divide the costs of the Eden Pool by the number of people using it, it’s $33 per use.
“At Bemboka it costs $78 per person.
“We need to make it something that Council can afford to do on long-term basis.”
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