Last month I relocated to Sequim and am looking forward to establishing my business here. I just started reading the Gazette and I was very alarmed to learn that the residents of Sequim may not support a 12-cent property levy to keep SARC running.
In my decision to move to Sequim, having access to a swimming pool that is affordable was in my top five considerations. Because I work long hours at home on my computer, swimming two or three times a week is essential to keep my body and my psyche healthy.
When I was deciding where to relocate, I considered all three towns — Port Townsend, Port Angeles and Sequim. I chose Sequim for its beauty, quiet and small-town appeal. Yet despite its size, it offered a high quality of life.
I am aware that some folks argue that SARC should be financially self-sustaining, like a regular business. But, as has been pointed out, such community swimming facilities are rarely self-supporting. They were established to provide a service to the people in the community, not as a profit-making enterprise. They exist to enhance the quality of life for residents.
I noticed that Port Townsend’s public pool is subsidized heavily by the city — the fees of admission only cover 50 percent of operating expenses. Also, the Port Angeles pool is subsidized by a yearly tax levy which provides a big chunk of the funds needed to keep the facility open — $475,000 projected for this year. The fees that would be collected from the levy would demand only about $2 a month for the average homeowner. I think this is a small price to pay for keeping the quality of life here high.
I do hope the residents of Sequim rise to the occasion and vote to support this facility.
I would very much like to stay here, but, if the pool closes, I would definitely need to revisit my decision to build a new life and business here.
P.S.: An acquaintance of mine, a college professor who teaches online from home, recently e-mailed me. She also is looking to relocate to this part of the peninsula. I asked what prompted her search, as she currently lives in a gorgeous rural setting in Quilcene. Her response: She wanted to be in a community that has a rec center with a pool so she could swim and have access to yoga classes. She needed it for her health.