The Board of Selectmen announced that there will be an open public hearing on the proposed swimming pool project on Monday, February 11 at 7:00pm in the Selectmen’s meeting room at Town Hall, 104 Central St.
The Town has received grant money to complete a feasibility study around the concept of building a public pool in town. At a hearing on January 14, the Town and consultant Jeff Fasser of BSC Group presented the initial resident survey results along with the consultant’s Site survey findings and some initial estimated costs.
The base construction cost ranged from $4.5 million for an outdoor pool to $9 million for an indoor, year-round facility. When including all the amenities residents identified in the surveys – such as a splash pad, concession area, lounge, diving board, etc. – the cost for the project could go as high as $14 million.
The The Dr. Arthur M. and Dr. Martha R. Pappas Foundation has offered a $1 million donation toward construction of the project. Taxpayers would bear the remainder of the cost, with estimates in the range of a tax increase of $0.52 per $1,000, or $137 per family per year. For a commercial taxpayer, the cost would be about $0.65 per $1,000, about $745 per.
The proposed site would be on a parcel that is currently part of the Pakachoag Acres, adjacent to the 20 acre Dr. Arthur and Dr. Martha Pappas Recreation Complex. There is about 140 acres of town-owned property bounded from Southold Rd. to Pakachoag St. to nearly Rt. 20.
Based on the outcome of the hearing, the Board of Selectmen expect to take a vote to place a non-binding referendum on the ballot for the May 2019 Town election. Such a referendum would gauge the sentiment of the voters, but not result in any final decisions. The results of the referendum would give town officials a better idea of public sentiment on the project before it were to go to any actual vote.