Panguitch Pool

The Panguitch pool project began August 9, 1977. At that time, an agreement was reached between the Garfield County School District and Panguitch City to move forward in building a pool on school property adjacent to and made part of the existing Panguitch High School gymnasium facilities. In the contract, Panguitch City agreed to construct the swimming pool with funding from an Economic Development Grant. The agreement stated the Garfield School District would operate and maintain the swimming pool. The School District honored the agreement by operating and maintaining the swimming pool for 34 years from 1977 to 2011. In the School Board meeting on October 27, 2011, proposals were presented to the School Board to consider which type of heating system would be installed at Panguitch High School to replace the 1964 leaking dilapidated boiler system. This boiler was used to heat the school and the pool with the District paying for all of the utilities. At the time, the pool was in need of an estimated $133,000 of renovations. The Board made a survey available to public back in 2011 to acquire additional input on the public’s view relating to the pool and heating system at PHS. The survey had 187 responses. The first question in survey was, do you support the spending of approximately $133,000 for the pool renovations? 75.9 % said no. The second question was, do you support spending approximately $460,000 to replace the heating system in PHS? 55.1% said yes. The third question said, are you in favor of closing the Panguitch pool? 66.8% said yes. During the October, 2011 Board meeting, the bid was awarded to Croft’s Heating to install individual roof top units for each classroom. This decision left no means to heat the pool without additional expenses added specifically for the pool. The Panguitch City Council met on January 24, 2012 and passed a motion to request $700,000 from the School District to move the pool from its current location. The District responded to the City with a letter dated February 14, 2012 stating they were not going to pay $700,000 for the pool and requested an appraisal of the facility. In the appraisal it states, “Given the physical incurable obsolescence associated with the pool, it is our opinion the highest and best use of the property is to import fill dirt, level the pool for an alternative use. Our final opinion of value for the subject property is $150,000.” The District compiled the bills directly associated with pool over a four year period, the District spent an estimated $97,347 toward pool expenses. On October 30, 2012 the School Board met with Panguitch City to discuss purchasing the pool and easement discussed in the contractual agreement between the two entities. The School Board made a motion to cancel the pool agreement with Panguitch City, purchase the swimming pool and easement for $181,000 and also provide the District with the option to use the wrestling room in old high school for two years. The money used to purchase the pool came from the District capital account which is not money used to pay for salaries; it is used specifically for capital projects. The swimming pool has been vacant for the past two years. The District has budgeted money over the last two years to fill the pool in to make it a usable space available to the students. Bids for the completion of the project were discussed in the October 30, 2014 meeting that included three options. The first option was to fill the pool with “geo-foam”, this bid was $98,093 just for the foam and not including the six inch concrete cap. The second bid was fill the pool with rock including the six inch concrete cap, the bid came in at $178,233. The final bid was to fill the pool with slurry including the six inch cap and the bid came in at $91,720. In the October 30, 2014 School Board meeting the bid was awarded to Bryce Valley Builders Inc. for $91,720. Students will be able to utilize this space for many school activities and events such as p.e., dances, volleyball, wrestling, etc. When the pool is discussed, the recreation tax discussion usually follows. The majority of the collected money under the recreation tax has been used to pay coaching stipends in all three high schools totaling approximately $80,000. The Utah legislature consolidated the recreation tax levy along with other tax levies into the “Board Local Levy” in January of 2013. The Garfield School District has been diligently working to improve the school facilities over past two years utilizing the Capital Project monies that were previously used to maintain the pool. The District has completed the following projects:

· Installed new heating systems at PHS and Bryce Valley Elementary

· Installed energy efficient lights in all classrooms and gymnasiums

· Resurfaced the tracks at PHS, EHS, and BVHS

· Resurfaced gym floors in all three high schools

· Remodeled two classrooms at PES

· Resurfaced the asphalt surfaces and parking lots in all schools

· Installed new sidewalks at EES

–Superintendent Ben Dalton

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