By the time you are sitting down to read this newspaper our area directors will have dove into a debate on whether or not regional staff should apply for a $3 million dollar grant to replace the outdoor pool.
The cost to us, the local taxpayers, would be $800,000.
It’s not a bad free money to grant money ratio – but we don’t have it.
The current reserves set aside for the Keremeos pool is about $149,000, which means we would have to tax for the rest. Of course it wouldn’t be one sum, we’re guessing, it would be a loan probably to be paid over 20 years.
For perspective the loan for the new fire truck was $350,000 and the department had about $180,000 in reserves to help pay for the truck, which will cost over $500,000. For the average homeowner the cost for the loan is between $9 and $12 a year.
Although that’s less than a cup of coffee a month there was still resistance to take a loan out for a truck that was aging out and had experienced previous problems.
A new pool using rough math skills would be about $22 to $30 a year for the average homeowner.
For some that’s not a lot of money and for others it is especially considering the cost of everything is on the rise.
The other option is a grant that would see the outdoor pool overhauled and it’s life extended 10 to 15 years.
That option would cost taxpayers nothing extra as our portion would be covered by reserves. The pool would get a combined federal and provincial grant for about $500,000 while we would pay about $139,000 from reserves.
There’s no doubt something needs to be done with the pool in Keremeos. It just comes down to how much money we want to pay and when.