Toledo’s old swimming pool across from the library needs a lot of work if it’s to remain open very much longer. Maintenance and operating costs are no longer affordable to the city – and for that the city council has declared that the pool will be permanently closed either in 2017 or at the latest 2018.
A group of Toledo area citizens got together and formed the Keep Our Pool Open Committee (KOPOC) aiming to raise the money to renovate the decades-old building and do repairs to the pool. The committee told the Toledo City Council that after an inspection of the aging pool, the costs would run between $1.3 million and $1.6 million dollars – the upper amount includes a new pool structure itself. To build a totally new pool and building is estimated at up to $4.5 million which the council and the committee admitted was just too expensive for the town and surrounding residents.
The committee said the strategy is to create a brand new Toledo Parks and Recreation District that could capture enough population and property tax revenue, both inside and outside the city limits, to float a bond to get everything paid for. The new special tax district would conform to the present boundaries of the Toledo Fire District which spreads well outside the city limits. There is always an outside chance that fundraisers and charitable donations from local affluent families and foundations might be able to fund part of it. Who knows. Maybe all of it.
But the plan appears to be to firm up the renovation estimates and then to put the issue on the May ballot next year. The proposed tax rate is 74 cents per thousand dollars of assessed valuation. So for a home assessed at $100,000 the tax would be $74/year, a home at $200,000 would be $148/year, a home at $300,000 would be $222/year and for a $400,000 home it would be $296/year.
KOPOC members told the council they will be coming back before them again to give a progress report on setting up the taxing district and confirming the vote on the tax will be on the May ballot.