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Budget cuts bring changes to fees, hours at 50-meter pool

By Mike DiCicco | | May 30, 2013

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Due to budget cuts, hours and fees at the Quantico 50-meter pool, which opens May 25, will be altered from last year.

Enlisted service members ranked sergeant and below, who previously used the pool for free, will pay $2 for entry, and most other single-entry fees are being bumped up by 50 cents to $1. Season passes for service members ranked E-1 to E-5 will cost $40 per individual or $70 per family. Season passes for staff noncommissioned officers and officers are up from $45 and $55, respectively, to $60, and those for Department of Defense civilians will now cost $80, up from $65 last year.

The costs for family season passes rose more sharply, from $65 last year for staff noncommissioned officers to $110 this year, for example. Prorated season passes are available at lower costs beginning July 14.

Ten- and 20-visit punch passes are available for the first time this year, at rates that make the price of a visit roughly the same as last year.

Open swim hours will end at 6 p.m., rather than 7, and lunchtime adult lap swim time is being cut back by 15 minutes. Morning adult lap swim time, previously offered from mid-June to mid-August, has been taken off the schedule, but Michelle Vukovich,  Semper Fit and recreation director, said officials are exploring options for reinstating the two months of morning hours.

“As we all know, [the Department of Defense] has experienced deep cuts across all services,” Vukovich wrote in an email. “In order for MCCS to provide a safe, quality swim program, fee increases combined with small changes to hours of operation had to be incurred to open within the allocated operating budget.”

She said group water exercises will not be offered this year due to low participation, and there will be no private lessons because of budget and staff limitations.

A water safety class will be offered May 29 to 31 for $200 plus the cost of books, which is lower than last year’s $225, but this year’s is designed just for current staff or active duty personnel.

Otherwise, lessons for all ages and skill levels are about the same as last year, with prices only slightly increased.

The cost of a pool party is also down, starting at $150, as opposed to last year’s $200.

Vukovich said all prices are based on a market survey. “Even though prices have increased, we still offer a great program at lower rates than the local bases and area pools,” she wrote. “Our goal of is
to continue to offer the highest valued recreational programs possible even in these rough economic times.”

— Writer: mdicicco@quanticosentryonline.com


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