Archive for Thursday, March 9, 2006

Future of USM’s indoor pool topic of town-hall meeting

March 9, 2006

The University of Saint Mary will conduct a town-hall meeting to discuss the future of 75-year-old Berchmans pool.

The university is considering closing the indoor pool, which it says now loses $7,000 a year and is in need of $54,000 in replacement parts and repairs.

The meeting, the university said, is an opportunity for the community to discuss and present funding options to keep the pool open. The meeting will be at 7 p.m. today, March 9, in Mabee Auditorium at the university.

Revenue generated from children's swim lessons, American Red Cross lifeguard training, aqua-fitness and rehabilitation usage does not offset the expenses for salaries and the labor and chemicals needed for the general upkeep of the pool, university officials said.

"The university can no longer bear the pool's annual financial losses in addition to the costly repairs required to keep the pool safe for public use," said Sister Diane Steele, University of Saint Mary president.

"We also realize that the pool is an important community asset and want to work with the people of Leavenworth and Lansing to find a funding solution."

Steele will attend the meeting, as will Keith Hansen, dean of student life; Janet Loewenstein, aquatics director; and Mark Gieseman, director of facilities for the University of Saint Mary and the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth.

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