CA must improve pool access for neighborhood's poor

Letter to the editor

November 18, 2011

I am writing regarding the Nov. 17 article about future plans for the aquatics master plan specifically regarding why the Faulkner Ridge pool is underutilized.

The Faulkner Ridge pool is located in an area with many lower-income families with children. They should be using the pool, but may not know how to apply for a discount or feel welcome at the pool.

Meanwhile, the pool has overgrown trees surrounding it and blocking the sun, which causes the water to be especially cold. The playground in the area, unlike in many neighborhood pools, has been long neglected.

The issue is what is the Wilde Lake Village Board and Wilde Lake's representative to the Columbia Association's board of directors are doing to promote fairness for these children coming from poverty-stricken homes. At the present time, 26.4 percent of students at Wilde Lake High School qualify for free and reduced-price lunches.

The Wilde Lake Village Center is depressing and has been left to languish while plans have been made and scrapped and remade. By the time the center is redone, the whole area will be depressed and no one will want to go the village center anyway.

The Wilde Lake Village Association and Columbia Association, as well as Howard County Recreation and Parks, the Faulkner Ridge and Cross Fox condominium associations and County Council representative Mary Kay Sigaty should sit down together to look at this as a much more serious problem than discounting pools for seniors, who in this county are often better off and have more income than many young families.

There need to be improvements made to the Faulkner Ridge pool and greater access for the community surrounding it and then it will not be underutilized.

Jean Daniello

Wilde Lake

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