As I indicated to you in my message after the budget submission, we face yet another challenge to the new pool at Chinquapin. We are not part of the base budget for FY 2018, but we are in the supplemental Capital Improvement Plan for FY 2018. What that means is that we have to convince the City Council to move the pool money from the supplemental (or unfunded) area to the base (or funded) budget.
We had a very productive meeting with Council Member John Chapman last week. He thinks that there is a chance that Council will agree to move some projects from the supplemental list to the base budget. But he warned us that many projects would be competing for that status, so we need to redouble our efforts to convince Council of the need for the new pool.
Accordingly, I’m asking you once again to write to the Council members and to the City Manager expressing your support for the new pool. You’ve done a great job so far and we are getting closer to the end so please take the time to write that message – even a short one is fine – and tell the Council that the new pool is needed.
We are stressing the following points in our meetings with the Council members:
- This is the third time that the aquatics community has been shortchanged on this pool.
– In 1985, the City built the wrong size pool and no school in Alexandria has been able to host an official meet in over 30 years.
– In 2008, $25 million set aside for Chinquapin was taken because of the cost overrun on the TC Williams High School.
– And now in 2017, we have seen our approved funding once again disappear.
- 7,500 school kids will not have the opportunity to learn how to survive in the water without the pool space offered by the new pool.
- The pool would benefit a wide range of Alexandria residents from toddlers to octogenarians. It offers city-wide services, unlike other fitness facilities in the City.
There are plenty of other reasons for the new pool, but these three are a good start to any message that you want to send.
You did it once in getting over 100 messages sent to Council members. Please do it again for yourselves and future generations of Alexandrians.
Also, if you are available, please come to the public sessions of the City Council and speak on behalf of the Chinquapin pool.
Thanks, Bill Rivers