A rebuttal to Mr. Howerter’s letter, “Taxpayers should not subsidize SARC” (Letters to the Editor, Sequim Gazette, July 30, page A-10): “ … special interest group claiming they deserve a subsidy from the population at large.” Sequim Aquatic Recreation Center was formed for and by that “population at large.” Bowling alleys, movie theaters and restaurants that go out of business are private enterprises and therefore not subsidized with public funds, as Mr. Howerter implies.
Question of demonstration: Mr. Howerter wrote, “A facility used by only a minority of the community should ‘pay its own way.’” Does that include the library, fire department and OMC?
Mr. Howerter goes on, “SARC should be required to operate by the same (company) standard.” Distinction: Private businesses provide the ability to gain personal wealth. SARC is a taxing entity formed to provide monetary support for the population at large swimming pool!
“Operating standards”: SARC is governed by state statutes and held to a higher financial and legal standard than most private citizens.
Mr. Howerter’s last comment was, “If SARC can’t remain solvent without taxpayer’s subsidy, it should close and sell its facilities to a private company.” To be sold, Sequim would have to be four times its present population to be profitable for a national franchiser to acquire.
Most importantly and often forgotten, Sequim Aquatic Recreation Center was known, as are 99 percent of all other public swimming pools, not to be self-supporting. That was true in 1985 and remains true to this day.
If more people had attended SARC’s seminar on July 23, maybe the population at large would better understand the difference between Business and Government!
(Richardson is a SARC board member.)