Friday, January 4, 2019

Commissioner Omari Hardy said, “We need to get very serious about this issue” and the editor at the Herald said, “Stop the bleeding!”

FYI: The City of Lake Worth is once again in the annual budget cycle. Budget Work Session #2 was held on June 26th. The next work session is scheduled for July 16th and there is a “Visioning Work Session” scheduled for July 24th.

The quotes below from Commissioner Hardy are from last year, in the 2017 budget cycle. . .

Quote #1 by Hardy:

“When this line [referencing Beach Fund graph] gets to zero in Fiscal Year 2018 that means we’re taking money out of the General Fund. . . . the idea of taking money out of the General Fund to subsidize what’s happening at the Beach is repugnant to me on many levels.”

Both the quote above and the quote below are from a Budget Work Session held in the City of Lake Worth in July 2017, a year ago.

If you’re a regular reader of this blog you know there have been many developments (pardon the pun) vis-à-vis the now condemned municipal pool, Casino complex and Beach property.

Also below are a few excerpts from a newspaper editorial penned last year in The Lake Worth Herald titled, “Stop the bleeding!”

Quote #2 by Hardy:

“As regards the pool [now condemned at the Beach], I’ve been corresponding with staff. Staff has been great getting me information about other pools throughout the County. Basically, I just want to make sure this is very clear. A lot of people assume when we talk about the pool there is a negative correlation between traffic and losses at the pool, ‘If we double our traffic at the pool we’d lose less money.
     Based on what I’ve seen throughout the County, that’s not true. . . . You can talk about Lake Lytal [Family Aquatic Center] which a lot of people compare us to, you can talk about the North County [Aquatic Complex] pool, you can talk about the Gaines Park pool [Warren Hawkins Aquatic Center], you can talk about the aquatic facility they have out in Wellington, or the Boynton Beach [John H. Denson] pool.
     They all have traffic that’s twice what we have and guess what their losses are? Two or three times what we have. . . . As we get the pool designs back, which I understand we’re in that process, we have to understand that what we’re doing — I’m not even sure that I can call it taking a risk — because what we’re doing is talking about spending more money at the pool to achieve an outcome that is the opposite of what we want, which is the pool to not contribute so terribly to the losses we’re experiencing at the Beach.
     We need to get very serious about this issue because it’s really going to threaten our ability to provide services to people who really need them. And need more than we’re able to provide. I think that’s incredibly important. We cannot be immature. I don’t use that word lightly. But if we’re unable to have priorities about this stuff, what we’re being is immature.”

Excerpts from an editorial in
The Lake Worth Herald:

Lake Worth needs a pool, not necessarily an Olympic pool, but at least one big enough to serve the community and teach children how to swim. There are plenty of opportunities for children to come into contact with water in Lake Worth. It is imperative they learn to swim.

and. . .

     Lake Worth does have some under-utilized parks with enough space to accommodate an aquatic center and should consider investing in a pool somewhere other than the beach. Bryant Park has space, but that would raise the ire of those who walk their dogs in the park. What is more important, dogs or children?
     What about Sunset Ridge Park, there might be enough space there too.
     Go to the north end of the city, there sits numerous baseball and softball fields, some of which are never or seldom used. Take PONY field for example, it is in shambles and occupies a large portion of the park area.

and. . .

     Stop the bleeding!
     Lake Worth needs a pool, but they also need some Staffers with some creativity. How many times do we have to fail at the same thing before we realize it is the taxpayers who suffer in other areas so we can keep failing?

Have thoughts on this issue?
Use this link to contact your
“Mayor and Commissioners.”