Letter: School pools should be open


To the editor,

As someone who has experience in local government, particularly in Boston, in the past and as a successful English swimmer over a period of decades, there is an idea that I am presenting to western Connecticut chief municipal executives.

The following presents my case. If you are an adult in most parts of America and in Europe for a fee you can swim year round in a municipal swimming pool. Whether in a Connecticut small town or large city, there are numerous taxpayer-owned indoor swimming pools. Most are under the school committees (education boards). The first priority should be in these cases the use of the pool by the school’s physical education department and by the school-supported swim team. Once that is accomplished on the schedule, for either an annual fee or per visit fee the average resident who wishes to swim laps or the like should be able to do so without a problem.

I am somewhat familiar with Naugatuck. There is absolutely no open lap swimming for fitness for adults. When the school is not in session and the specific high school team is not there, with an appropriate fee a community adult should have an option to buy an annual membership. I recall this idea working very well in Boston and suburban Boston in the past. In some cases this could be a great revenue enhancer in these tight fiscal times. I am not suggesting anything free, a reasonable paid membership would generate a lot more revenue than one can think. The school’s use is the chief priority. Yet when students are not there in the late evenings or weekends etc. this idea would work.

Connecticut is by far one of the most difficult locales to find indoor pools. I know this idea would work in Naugatuck. My late friend, Frank Spec Shea, when he was recreation director years ago had a modified version of my plan in Naugatuck. My idea is a plus for revenue and fitness.

Peter Jurzynski