Save Mt Helena Pool
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On September 9 the Shire of Mundaring Council voted to decrease the operating hours of the Mt Helena Aquatic Centre. It has reduced the operational weeks from 22 to 9 weeks. This is a huge change and the community has not been consulted. As stated, “it is not necessary to undertake a formal consultation process, other than to inform the community of the changes and the supporting reasons.”
The report prepared for the Council meeting was compiled by a Shire of Mundaring. If you google, Shire of Mundaring Minutes Council meeting 12/09/2017 you will be able to read the report in full.
What is frightening, the Shire of Mundaring has decreased the pool’s operational times before. This present reduction for this season is huge. It will only further limit the number of people who can access the pool in the summer months. For example, I have been told that the Shire thinks all is alright because no one has complained. Unfortunately, not many people are aware of the report. The data used for this report is limited data from only last year and has not taken into account the community of Mt Helena. So the Shire of Mundaring needs to hear from community members. You can call, email or write a letter or stop at the shire and speak to all your local councilors. The East ward councilors are Cr John Daw, Cr Kate Driver and Cr Stephen Fox. They need to hear from you, if you want a pool in Mt Helena.
The youth of Mt Helena and young families with children will be affected. Presently, the pool will open at 3:30 pm. If the pool opened at 3 pm this would open the doors for many more teenagers to have a swim after school or for more organized get together to be established for our young people.
The closing time will be 6 pm. Young working families who are travel up and down the hills cannot get home in time to have a chance of a swim or some shared family time together at the pool. Most people work until 5 o’clock by the time they get home to Mt Helena the pool will be closed or the time that could be spent swimming would be narrowed down and limited.
In one report on the same night as the Mt Helena pool reduction, the Council adopted a new Youth Service Model which will help meet the needs of young people. Their first principle is to increase “on the ground” youth connections across the Shire. Activities set around the use of the Mt Helena Pool would be an appropriate venue for after school or evenings.
In closing, the Mt Helena Community has supported the building of the Mt Helena Aquatic Centre. There were donations of a block of land, building a house whose proceeds went to the building of the pool and many fund raisers. The Mt Helena community made it happen! We need to get back that spirit of community and fight for what is rightfully ours….the Mt Helena Pool. Please sign to let the Shire of Mundaring and all the councilors know how you feel.
Joan Quinn, President
Mt Helena Residents & Ratepayers Association
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