Pool's plug not pulled - yet

Saved . . . for now: Mount Druitt pool won't open for this summer but there's hope it will reopen in 2014-15 and beyond.
Saved . . . for now: Mount Druitt pool won't open for this summer but there's hope it will reopen in 2014-15 and beyond.

MOUNT Druitt pool was rescued from redevelopment at a Blacktown Council meeting last week.

The pool's closure was debated for the 11th time at the council since May for almost an hour.

Councillor Stephen Bali put up a new motion for up to $40,000 from the pool's budget be allocated to University of Western Sydney to develop plans and options to make the pool viable to reopen for the 2014-5 summer and beyond.

The motion also requested the site not be redeveloped in the meantime.

"I know the pool can't be open this summer so this is a reasonable compromise being undertaken to take the heat out of the situation," Cr Bali said.

He and fellow Labor councillors expressed their disappointment about the report before the council which justified the reasons for the pool closure.

The report was called for by independent Russ Dickens in September, who was absent last week.

"It's most disgraceful report I've seen in my 10 years on the council," councillor Edmond Atalla said.

"It's not worth the paper it's written on. I've spoken to the caretaker who was there for 30 years, who said there was absolutely nothing wrong with the pool."

Liberal councillors questioned whether UWS was the best institution to take on the brief.

"The researcher could be from Perth for all we know," mayor Len Robinson said.

Councillor Karlo Siljeg added: "We shouldn't limit ourselves to UWS and call for expressions of interest from other universities. Wouldn't it be better to have more ideas than if we go to one university?"

Liberal councillors Mark Holmes and Walter Smith crossed the floor to support Labor's motion, which brought applause from the public gallery.

The news comes despite the mayor recently telling the Star otherwise.

"The pool's gone," he said.

Save Mount Druitt Pool advocate Kerri Bradbury remains hopeful.

"I'm appreciative of councillors Smith and Holmes in their support for the motion when they didn't have to. We'll see what happens. We will continue to be persistent and help out if needed to make this possible."

This story Pool's plug not pulled - yet first appeared on St Marys-Mt Druitt Star.


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