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December 20, 2014

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NLV City Council votes to open 2 pools this summer

Third pool will be open for swim team practices only

The North Las Vegas City Council decided Wednesday to open only two of its four swimming pools — the Hartke and Silver Mesa facilities — for open-swim this summer, part of an effort to cut costs.

The pools will be open three days a week for nine weeks from June to August, said Aaron Turnier, the city’s recreation coordinator for aquatics. Dates for the opening and closing have not yet been set, he said.

Admission to the Hartke pool, 1638 N. Bruce St., will be free. Admission to the Silver Mesa pool, 4025 Allen Lane, will be $3 for adults and $2 for children, as it has been for the last 10 years, Turnier said.

The Walker pool, 1509 June Ave., is under renovation but will remain open for swim team practices. The Petitti pool, 2505 N. Bruce St., will be closed for a second consecutive year.

The last time North Las Vegas had all four pools open was the summer of 2009, Turnier said. The city also has been forced to raise fees for aquatic programs, more than doubling its charges in some cases. Swim teams, for example, must now pay $100, up from $40.

Funding for the city’s pools has been cut by more than 50 percent in recent years. Last year, North Las Vegas opened two pools — Walker and Silver Mesa — but attendance stayed steady from the year before at about 34,000 people, Turnier said.

Based on last year’s numbers, Turnier and Kim Leavitt, recreation manager for North Las Vegas, decided to again open only two pools.

“We’re still able to provide a service,” Turnier said, while saving the city money on money for staffing.

It will cost $72,000 to open the pools for open swim, Turnier said. That pays for 6,400 hours for part-time and seasonal employees, and the department is requesting no new funds.

The City Council unanimously approved the plan.

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