REYNOLDSVILLE — Marilyn Hoare, representing the Reynoldsville Pool Committee, provided an update on the finances of the pool at a recent Reynoldsville Borough Council meeting and explained work that still needs to be done following phase one of construction that was completed earlier this year.
She began by discussing how much money was brought in just through use and memberships at the pool.
“We took in $11,582 at the gate. We also had family memberships of $21,110. These reports this year are not as accurate as they should be. They’ve never broken the whole thing down before and we’re breaking it down. So, we’re going to have new forms and be able to give you a better view of the situation,” Hoare said.
She then talked about the construction projects at the pool. This cost was much higher than previous projects, but was completed with some grant money.
“Up until this recent project we had on the pool, other than what the borough gives us, the $5,000 each year, the pool has been sort of self-sufficient. We’ve done fundraisers, we’ve replaced over $20,000 in fences, paved the parking lots and everything. This year we had to use a grant to dig the whole way around the pool, pull up pipes, lights, fix it, and reinforce the pool structure itself to the tune of $336,000,” Hoare said.
She said the pool was fortunate to have received $150,000 in grant money with the help of former Sen. Joe Scarnati. In previous years, the pool has raised a bulk of money from its ATV ride fundraiser, but Hoare said this fundraiser is no longer doing as well as it used to.
Hoare said with the aging of the pool committee members, they don’t have the ability to go check all the trails and maintain them like they need. The committee will be meeting once a month going forward with the goal of coming up with a different fundraiser.
“Roughly, we took in $73,613.16,” Hoare said. “We put out $56,311.70 just in wages and maintaining, like the electric.”
The pool pays all of its own utility bills, the borough is not responsible for paying any of these. She said a point the committee is not proud of is the concession stand, which she said the pool lost money on. Hoare said it didn’t run properly, and that this will be changed next year.
Looking ahead to next year, Hoare said the toilets and sinks have to be replaced. The second phase of the major construction also still needs to be completed.
While presenting the pool expenses to the borough council, she requested the council to consider raising its annual donation to the pool, which is currently $5,000. She also requested the borough to work with them on the opening and closing of the pool. Hoare said that as the pool committee members age, it gets harder to complete.
“We would like to know if there’s any chance that we could cross-train somebody on the maintenance department or something in case something happens, to open and close the pool,” Hoare said.
She said since the pool keeps getting denied for grants, it’s going to take more fundraising to complete the projects that still need to be done.
“We’re very fortunate people in this town have given to the pool, but it’s one of the few recreations we do have for the community that we’re fighting to keep open,” Hoare said.
In response to the request for more money from the borough, Councilman Ralph “Tucker” August asked what the borough gets back from the pool, saying the borough owns the pool and should get something.
Vice President Kyle Gordon asked about the projects that still need to be completed, searching for a specific goal the council could try to help with. President Bill Cebulskie said he has been attending the pool committee meetings, and that they are trying to get more grant money but the Department of Community and Economic Development is “not cooperating with anything.”
“They want us to have an engineer come in from Philly just to give us some kind of a spec of how we should be running things, and right there is $100,000. It just doesn’t make sense,” Cebulski said.
Gordon further explained that although Hoare was there asking for a couple thousand dollars more from the borough, he understood that in the “grand scheme” that money would be “a drop in the pail compared to what you really need.”
“Considering this is a life line for our community… That is a critical piece to our community and something that we want to make sure we’re figuring out however we can to support it, more so than profit from it,” Gordon said.
He asked that in the future she bring a specific project to the council to ask for assistance with the cost, saying he’d rather see a project and a one-time payment for a long-lasting project to help with.