In the deep end: $2.1M deficit to run Cornwall pools, splash pads in 2018

In this September 2017, file photo, a copy of Cornwall's policy and procedures manual for city pools. A report to the city's budget committee indicates the pools and splash pads will cost taxpayers $2.1M in 2018. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

CORNWALL – It will cost city taxpayers just over $2.1 million to operate Cornwall’s outdoor pools, splash pads and the Aquatic Center.

Those figures are contained in a report to be reviewed by the city’s budget committee tomorrow (Friday) morning.

The city has five outdoor pools and three splash pads, plus the Aquatic Center.

The report shows the “net expenditure” of the Aquatic Center is $1.33 million and for the outdoor pools and splash pads, it’s $825,000.

In order words, taxpayers are on the hook for $2,155,000, even after all the revenue is collected from swimming lessons, registration fees and programming.

The report also shows that the five outdoor pools mostly have fewer than 100 people register for swimming lessons at any one pool (414 total) and all five pools receive fewer than 4,400 visits during the two months, on average, the pools are open.

Last year, there were 16,050 visits to outdoor pools – 4,495 fewer people than in 2016.

The outdoor pools are at Terry Fox Park, St. Francis Park, Reg Campbell Park, St. Joseph Park and Mattice Park.

While the city’s budget committee made a number of cuts last week, it wasn’t about to tackle a recommendation of closing one outdoor pool, until it received this report.

The budget meeting starts at 9 a.m. Friday at city hall and is open to the public.