Police Jury discusses Ferriday pool

Published 12:54 am Tuesday, June 26, 2007

VIDALIA — Concordia Recreation District No. 1 wants help from the parish police jury to close the swimming pool in Ferriday.

Recreation District Chairman Robert Lee III asked the police jury Monday to do anything it could to advise the district on what steps to take.

“This has taken so much time and energy,” Lee said at Monday’s meeting. “We need a systematic method of fixing this.”

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Ferriday Mayor Gene Allen and the recreation district have been sparring over the newly opened pool, which the district says poses a health hazard.

Since the recreation district owns the pool, they could be held liable should anything happen, Lee said.

“We’ve got a situation here that is a lawsuit waiting to happen,” Lee said. “God forbid we should have an outbreak of E. coli, the headhunters will come and we will all be looking for someplace to duck.”

The best course of action would be to close the pool until a course of action could be decided, Police Jury President Melvin Ferrington said.

And while he said he didn’t want children or other residents at risk, he didn’t want to fill in the pool, as Lee suggested might be necessary.

“That should be a last resort,” Ferrington said.

Jury member Joe Parker Jr. said he supported the recreation district absolutely but didn’t want to see the pool filled in, either.

“I don’t like the words ‘fill in,’” he said. “Because if we lose it, we’ll never get it back.”

Ferrington suggested Lee and the district close the pool and work to file a court order, which would keep the town from re-opening the pool.

As a long-term solution, Lee suggested bringing in an engineer to design and build an insert, which could be placed inside the existing, cracked pool.

The board generally liked the idea and suggested the project might be paid for with grant money.

Any grants would take at least one year to acquire, though, Jury member Cathy Darden said.

The police jury was also presented with their annual audit.

The audit revealed no big problems, CPA Jeri Sue Tosspon said.

“This was a good audit and what I’d call a clean audit,” Tosspon said. “That’s something to be proud of.”