A message from Rebecca Kay, President, SOAC
Director Black has asked the APRC Commissioners (each individually) to re-prioritize the 15 or so Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) that were in the budget prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. They will be doing that in the next two weeks, and then discussing their choices at their next APRC Study Session on June 3, 2020. Click here for a list of these projects and their budgeted amounts.
Director Black has informed me that the Ashland Citizens for Economic Sustainability, ACES, (see their Facebook page) and several other individuals have already expressed their opinions to the Commissioners and himself, arguing that Ashland cannot/should not spend money on a new pool at this time. Even back in January when the proposal for the revenue bond was passed by City Council, councilwoman Julie Atkins voted “no”; she has not changed her mind since.
The APRC Commissioners need to hear from you! They want to know which projects are most important to us, as Ashland citizens. Please take the time to write and/or email the Commissioners and Director Black, noting which three projects are most important to you, and why. Believe me, they want to hear from all of us. And, you can bet that we are not the only ones reaching out to them with our choices for the top three (e.g., there’s the East Main project for bike enthusiasts, the Pickleball Project for those players). Again, here is the link of the CIP projects that will be re-prioritized.
For your convenience, here are the names and email addresses of Director Black and the 5 Commissioners:
Julian Bell firstname.lastname@example.org;
Mike Gardiner email@example.com;
Joel Heller firstname.lastname@example.org;
Rick Landt email@example.com;
Jim Lewis firstname.lastname@example.org;
Michael Black email@example.com;
To help you formulate your thoughts, here are some reasons why Ashland desperately needs a new pool (in no particular order) and some resources:
- Ashland needs a functioning pool. The infrastructure of the Daniel Meyer pool is falling apart rapidly and costly repairs are not recommended.
- 83 of 98 cities in Oregon, with population over 4000, have access to a year round pool within 30 minutes. The Rogue Valley has none, no year round public pool.
- When SOU closed its pool in 2015, Daniel Meyer became the only public pool. Daniel Meyer Pool supports these aquatic teams: Ashland HS Swim Team, Ashland HS Water Polo Team,Talent/Phoenix HS Swim Team, Rogue Valley Water Polo Club, Sharks Swim Team, Rogue Valley Master Swim Team.
- Daniel Meyer Pool summer program offers swim lessons to all from toddlers to adults; knowing how to swim saves lives.
- Daniel Meyer Pool summer program also offers various aquatic classes for all ages, as well as lap swimming for all skill levels.
- The following organizations all support physical aquatic activities, and articles regarding the health and safety benefits of aquatics may be found on their websites.
- The Center for Disease Control
- World Health Organization
- National Drowning Prevention Alliance
- USA Swimming, USA Water Polo
- US Water Fitness Association
- US Masters Swimming
- Aquatic Exercise Association
- American Academy of Pediatrics
- Blue Mind Company
- National Autism Association
- Pool and Hot Tub Alliance
- The Special Olympics
- American Heart Association
AGAIN! I urge all of you to please take a few minutes to send an email to the commissioners and Director Black, voicing your concerns and requesting that the pool project remain a top priority in the CIP budget and that they research all possible funding sources. Kindly do this before their next study session on June 3, 2020. I would very much appreciate being cc’d on your email so that I have an idea of the volume of emails sent and the contents (cc to firstname.lastname@example.org). Many, many thanks!