Star Valley swimming pool representatives and supporters appeared before the Lincoln County School District No. 2 Board of Trustees Thursday Mar. 20 asking for support of a joint powers board.
An initial committee was formed last year with volunteers interested in the construction of a community pool in Star Valley. The committee developed and distributed a survey in December seeking public input on the project.
“What we have drawn from the survey is that there is an interest in having a pool,” committee spokesman Marlowe Scherbel told the school board.
Scherbel referenced survey results from over 800, with 649 responses noting strong interest in a pool.
Citing the interest, Scherbel asked the board for participation on a joint powers board that will be formed for the project. He suggested that a joint power board could complete a more detailed study and additional work needed for the project.
“We should ask, ‘can we do this, can we really afford it?’ ” Scherbel said speaking of a joint powers board. “We should at least bring the group together to at least discuss it.”
Scherbel emphasized the importance of school district participation. “Educational activities build confidence and a swimming team could be a part of that,” he advised. “The schools could be a large part of that.”
LCSD No. 2 Board Chairman Alan Linford cautioned fellow trustees and those attending the meeting about the schools taking a lead role on the project.
Trustee Lane Allred agreed, but noted the importance of having someone on the school board to be a part of the discussion.
Trustee Eileen Merritt favored the proposal and made the motion to an LCSD No. 2 representative join the board.
The measure passed, with the exception of trustee Wade Hirschi who expressed concern over the need to create a specific board. “We don’t need to create a brand new government entity just to talk,” he advised.
LCSD No. 2 Attorney Dennis Lancaster counseled the school board that it could withdraw representation from the joint powers board with a 60-day notice.
Scherbel noted the town of Afton had already agreed to join the proposed Star Valley Swimming Pool Joint Powers Board.
The survey distributed by the swimming pool committee in December, included the following question:
1. I am in favor of a swimming pool being built in Star Valley, 2. I am in favor of supporting the swimming pool facility if it can be done with existing local tax dollars, 3. I am in favor of supporting the swimming pool facility with new local tax dollars if necessary, 4. If new taxes were implemented to fund the facility, which of the following would you support as the new tax, and 5. Where do you reside?
Of the responses, 560 supported the project with no new taxes, while 292 agreed with the project if a tax was required. Additional responses showed 514 favoring a sixth penny sales tax.