Reopening public pool remains uncertain

The outdoor facilities at the Payette Public Pool are pictured on July 14. The facilities remain closed, pending implementation of protocols for the novel coronavirus COVID-19, as well as the the hiring of lifeguards and a pool manager.

PAYETTE 

Those waiting for the city of Payette to announce the reopening date of the Payette Public Pool will need to wait longer still, as the Payette City Council recently continued its discussion of progress on its reopening.

At the Council’s July 6 meeting, Councilors and Mayor Jeff Williams discussed the various pieces needed in place to reopen, including reestablishing the position of pool manager, a position which Williams had previously been serving de facto.

“The consensus was, ‘Yes, we do want to open,’” Williams recalled. “But we do have some things we have to do to be able to open.”

A key component of operating a swimming pool is a lifeguard; as such, in order for the pool to reopen, the city needs to hire and train new lifeguards. Officials are still working to get the pool facilities to meet state guidelines as they relate to COVID-19 in order to get started. City Clerk Mary Cordova noted that getting adequate supplies of personal protective equipment is the biggest obstacle.

“We haven’t been able to get [the lifeguards] into the pool safely [to train], according to the guidelines,” Cordova told the Council. 

Another item that needed addressing was the installation of plexiglass shields and a small door by the front counter, both of which were in progress immediately prior to the meeting.

Williams previously noted the need for workers to keep facilities clean, as well. 

The city has not announced a reopening date as of press time. City officials anticipate the pool facilities will cost $123,411 to reopen through the end of 2020.

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