Plaza Pool seeks funds

ALPENA -Alpena County Plaza Pool hopes to save money on operational costs once the new energy efficiency upgrades are made to the facility by Ameresco. Until the full savings are realized however it is still semi-dependent on funds from the youth and recreation.

During Monday’s Alpena County Finance Committee meeting Norm Sommerfeld of Synchronization’s Management and pool Director Krista Morrow made requests to the county that would have the commissioner’s request funds from the youth and recreation committee to use at the pool.

The requests were for $85,000 for general operations, while the second was for $3,400 for equipment. The final request would be for $7,500 for the Ready, Set, Swim program. In all Synchronizations is seeking $95,900. Sommerfeld said the amount requested has gone down because of the increased use of the pool.

“We take in roughly $225,000 in revenue and $85,000 comes from the youth and rec millage,” Sommerfeld said. “It used to be about 50-50 from what the youth and rec put in and what the revenue at the pool was. Now we have been able to increase the revenue and we hope over time if the millage is renewed we can continue to whittle the amount down and not request as much.”

Commissioner Cam Habermehl, who was an alternate on the committee due to the absence of Jeff Kowalski, praised the work the management group and Morrow has done at the pool since taking over.

“I have stopped over there and the place looks great and it is busy,” Habermehl said. “I haven’t heard a negative thing about it and I think everyone is doing a great job. That place is really hopping now and I think we made a good move by bringing them onboard.”

The county will also make a $20,000 funding request to the Older Persons Committee on behalf of Synchronizations that would be used toward senior programming at the pool.

In other business:

the committee approved spending $1,980 to have an emergency siren placed on top of the Alpena Township North Fire Department replaced. The siren is owned by the township and is a part of the county’s emergency operations system, which allows for the county to maintain it. Currently the siren only sounds when it is activated.

the committee approved a request to hang a plaque honoring former Attorney General Frank J. Kelley in the hall outside the courtroom. The plaque will cost about $6,000 and be purchased with funds from the Kelley Trust Fund.

the committee approved entering into a four year lease-to-buy program with Dean Arbour Ford for three patrol vehicles. The county will make annual payments of $22,617 for the new Ford Explorer Police Interceptors.

Steve Schulwitz can be reached via email at or by phone at 358-5689. Follow Steve on Twitter ss_alpenanews. Read his blog, Upon Further Review … at