Basin voters douse pool hopes
November 10, 2006
Snyderville Basin voters apparently weren’t convinced that bureaucrats had done their homework when they defeated a proposed $12 million bond meant to build a swimming pool and more trails in western Summit County.
Fifty-three percent of voters rejected the ballot measure on Election Day.
"I was disappointed with that," said Ron Perry, who chairs the Snyderville Basin Special Recreation District governing board.
The district wanted the bond to construct a leisure pool near the public Basin Recreation Field House at Kimball Junction.
But officials couldn’t convince voters to increase their property taxes to pay for the pool.
If passed, taxes for primary homeowners would have increased about $15 per $100,000 of assessed value, according to Bonnie Park, a Basin Recreation spokeswoman.
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Because letters to the editor and a last-minute advertising campaign exposed problems with the bond request, opponents say 2,529 voters voted ‘nay’ while 2,248 supported the proposal.
Among precincts where voters supported the bond were ParkWest, Silver Springs, Highland Estates and parts of Thaynes Canyon.
"I was a little reticent to put it on the ballot for this year because I did not think that we had the necessary needs assessment done or that we were properly prepared to present it before the people for an election," Perry said.
However, a last-minute flier sent out against the bond in Snyderville contained misinformation "which disturbed me," Perry insisted.
The public wasn’t as involved this time as during past bond campaigns in the district, Perry said.
"We have been entrusted with bonds before and we have followed through with the mandate that our constituents want," he said. "Usually, when we have a bond, we are very, very well prepared."
While losing $300,000 per year, the pool would be subsidized by taxpayers, the opposition claimed in an anonymous flier sent to homeowners in the district, which is situated within the boundaries of the Park City School District outside of the Park City limits.
Public swimming pools near Pinebrook and in Kamas already lose nearly $550,000 per year combined, the flier states.
To construct parks at Trailside and Ecker Hill Basin voters approved a $7.5 million bond in 1995. In 2001, an $11 million bond was approved to purchase the Basin Recreation Field House, an ice rink at Quinn’s Junction and trails and open space.