Thursday, August 29, 2013

Virtual Tour of the Pool Solution

Hot on the heels of the images of the pool in Summer yesterday here is a 3D tour of the Solution to the Pool with the sides closed. Take a look. It's very impressive.
Click here for the video

College students - Take care of your absentee ballots today

Attention all college students.!

Take care of your absentee ballot today. You will be able to vote YES in November.  Here is the link explaining the process

From the town website -


The process for voting by absentee ballot includes qualifying, applying, obtaining the ballot and returning the ballot.

To QUALIFY for voting by absentee ballot, an elector must be unable to appear at the required polling place during all hours of voting for one of the following reasons:
  • Active service in the armed forces of the United States
  • Absence from the town of voting residence during all of the hours of voting
  • Illness
  • Physical disability
  • Religious tenets which forbid secular activity on the day of the election;
  • Duties as an election official at a polling place other than his/her own during all of the hours of voting
To obtain an absentee ballot, an elector must first submit an application with an original signature to the Town Clerk's office by mail or in person.  Absentee ballot applications are available from the Connecticut Secretary of State's website and from the Town Clerk's office, either in person or by mail (requests can be submitted by calling 203 271-6601 or in writing to the Town Clerk, 84 South Main St., Cheshire, CT 06410).   Ballots are then issued for each valid application. 
The actual absentee ballots for each election are available one month prior to the election, or three weeks before a referendum.  These ballots can be picked up at the Town Clerk's office by the applicant or can be mailed directly to the applicant.  Please note that anyone may pick up an absentee ballot application for an elector, however, the ballot itself can only be handed in person to the elector named on the application or mailed directly to the applicant.
Ballots may be returned to the Town Clerk's office by the applicant in person or by mail.  An immediate family member may return a ballot, but must show identification and sign the sealed ballot envelope in front of a staff member.  All ballots must be returned by close of business on the day of the election or referendum to be counted. 

Please contact us at 203 271-6601 or at or visit the Town Clerk’s Office for more information.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Pool Solution goes to referendum in November

After a few tense moments last night the Town Council voted to put the Pool Solution on the ballot in November. It was a vote of 8-1 with Mr. Sima voting against. He felt that the committee should have gone with the more expensive option.

We disagree.

The Pool Evaluation Committee worked diligently to arrive at a recommendation that cuts operational costs, reduces closure of pool to 0%, retains the summer feel through removable side panels, is a reasonable cost, and has survived over pools during Hurricane Katrina and Michigan Lake effect snows. It is capable of being insulated better than our attics and it is a permanent enclosure. No more bubble collapses. No more downtime and closure while the bubble is put up and taken down thus decreasing revenue. It is a reliable recommendation that provides year-round, safe swimming for all our citizens.  It is a good solution that we encourage you to motivate all your neighbors to vote yes to.

Here are some views of the Solution. You can see that it is still an open feel and the picnic and grassy areas are preserved. The airlocks are gone and the dangerous doors replaced. The steel tension building is well insulated and strong. Take a look to get an idea of what the Solution will look like.

Vote Yes to the Pool Solution November 5th

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

7.30 tonight at Town Hall- Pool Solution expected to go to Referendum in November.

Tonight, Tuesday, August 27th at 7.30 Town Hall.
The Council votes on what it will be including in the Capital Budget. We hope to hear that the Community Pool will be sent to referendum in November.
Please attend  tonight to show your support.

The Solution to the Pool

From 5 to 7 pm tonight the Cheshire Y Sea Dogs will hold their registration for Short Course season. With swim community goodwill, tenacity, and indefatigable spirit the coaches and team have secured pool time in numerous locations so that the kids can prepare to bring further pride to Cheshire at State Championships, Y Nationals, Junior Nationals (and in Olympic years Olympic trials). I would expect to see many of them come from registration to the town meeting tonight just as they did on school nights in Spring and exactly as they did during the vacation days of August. In the audience too were those who have children with special needs who find respite, joy and exercise at the Community Pool. We had seniors in attendance, some for whom the pool is the only place they can safely move, some rehabbing from hip surgery, some just getting their groove on at AquaZumba! Lap swimmers, many lean and fit, attended to find out if their winter swim would continue. High school kids, worried about homework time being cut into as they travelled out of town for a sport that requires so much time commitment already, they were all there. Multi-generational families that travel as a group to the pool to enjoy a day or evening of swimming and fun sat in attendance to find out the progress of the town asset. 

 The Pool Evaluation Committee has answered all the requests that the town asked for. It provided a pool solution with no downtime unlike the bubble, it cut energy costs by giving an option with insulation rates of R35 (better than many of our attics), it found a solution used over pools that survived Katrina and Lake Michigan snow dumps, it held onto the summer feel by providing a pool with sides that could be removed to allow for a pavilion like structure. Best of all it cut the cost of the previous proposal by more than half.

 Those who complained of energy costs have been heard, those who complained of unavailability are satisfied, those who worry about collapse should have no fear, and those who worry about their tan, well they too were considered
The solution to the pool is a good one. We are confident that tonight it will go to referendum, and we will work tirelessly to let our community know that this is the sensible future of the Cheshire Community Pool.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Recap of the August 20th Capital Budget Hearing

The public hearing went well last night. We had a great turnout. It was a very positive atmosphere. Thank you so much for coming to show your support and thank you to those who spoke in favor of the pool.
Highlights of the evening
Mr. Wetmore who co-chaired the Pool Evaluation Committee addressed many of the concerns of those in the audience who are still making up their minds. He has put together a business report that will be available online, at the Town Library and the Senior Center. He reminded us that the pool is not a business but a municipal entity. He gave us the reality-check figure that the solution to the pool would cost the average homeowner a paltry $2.60 per year. $2 and 60 cents for a solution. He talked of community and how he doesn't use the youth center, have kids in school, use the library and the senior center but pays for it as part of the community "cover charge" as it were. We all pay for roads we don't use and venues we don't attend. It is disingenuous to single out the pool. He commended the volunteerism of the Evaluation Committee and supporters and urged us all to work hard to get the solution passed. 

 Robyn Housemann gave a stirring account of the health challenges facing our society and contrasted them with the benefits of using a pool. She spoke of seniors who often can only exercise in water because of mobility issues. She spoke of the advantages of swimming with regard to heart disease, obesity and diabetes. She urged Cheshire to continue its record of encouragement of activity as evidenced by the existence of the linear trail, open space and Park and Rec programs. She called the pool a "social asset" outlining the mental health benefits of going as a family to swim, in a group to exercise, or individually improving your health.

 The swim teams were represented by Greg Han who told of his personal journey from child to young man and the life lessons he took from swim team's "intense" regimen. He credited his swim achievements with his acceptance to Amherst. Paul Robinson found out from council that there is 275K from insurance regarding the bubble collapse and was assured that it would be spent on pool-related expenses. Denise Bishop, a swimmer's mother, told of her conversion from a parent dropping her child at the pool for practice to an active participant in all the activities that the pool has to offer. She pleaded with the Council to vote for the solution.

 Matt Levine, also on the Evaluation Committee, reminded us all that this is a "community" pool. It serves young and old of all abilities. He noted that the pool was the site of the National Dual Meet record and was a huge source of pride then and should continue to be so. He promised the Council that we would work tirelessly to get the solution passed in referendum.

The Council now takes all these comments into consideration and on the 27th (Tuesday) will vote on the items to be included in the Capital Budget. We will know on Tuesday if the solution will go to referendum in November. Our work then will be getting the information to all our friends and neighbors and making sure that they get out to Vote Yes to the Pool solution. We will be relying heavily on each and every one of the Friends of Cheshire Pool to secure a yes vote. Judging by the performance of everyone so far we are well up to that task !

Monday, August 19, 2013

Write to the Editor

It's Monday. Please take a moment to write to the editors of our local papers to let them know how important the pool is to you. Doing so this week is particularly important as we are very close to the budget vote date. Lots of good information came out of the Town Council meeting

 We are particularly excited by the enclosure's capacity to bear 50" of snow and sustain 130 mph winds, and its capacity to be insulated to the level that you insulate your attic. That will great reduce operating costs.

 We were happy to hear that the pool generates 600K in revenue and was on an upward trajectory of revenue before the blizzard.

 We were mesmerized by the high cost of making it a summer only pool, the fact that the pool was never built to be open in winter e.g. pipes are not below the freezing lev...el, the need for 300K minimum to hard-winterize it, 60K for covers etc. and then an annual 50K to do so each year, the added cost of almost 70k for the high school kids to practice elsewhere, the reduction of the 600K revenue by 75% due to 9 month closure, the fast degradation of an outdoor pool, and the need for security to try to avoid the very costly vandalism of an outdoor pool. 

 We were thrilled to hear that the capacity to have the sides open will retain the outdoor feel in the summer and allow for picnic areas and greens.

 We were also very happy to hear that similar structures up since 2003/4 over large pools like our own had survived Hurricane Katrina in the South and Lake Michigan snows in the North.

Please show your support for the pool by writing to the following media entities
and Cheshire Patch -

Friday, August 16, 2013

August 20th meeting- Critical that you attend

We have two very important meetings this month for you to attend.

It is absolutely critical that every supporter attend the Capital Budget meeting on the 20th. The Council will take comments and questions from the public on the Pool Evaluation Committee's choice of the year-round steel tension structure. This is the mid-tier option of 3.2 million dollars. It is designed for a snow load of 50" and can withstand 130mph winds. It will vastly reduce the operating costs of the pool. It is a very good choice.

The meeting is on Tuesday, the 20th at 7.30pm in the Town Hall. We need each and every one of you, your family and your neighbor. We expect this to reach standing room only quickly as the anti-pool contingent are well mobilized this year. Come early and secure seating.

We will also ask you to attend the final vote on the 27th.

There will be several items on the agenda. We ask that you speak at this meeting letting the Council know how much of an asset the pool is to the town, to all our citizens young and old.


Our pool benefits our seniors by providing a safe and accessible place to keep fit and mobile.

It benefits those with injuries, allowing them a place to rehab long after insurance stops paying for physical therapy.

It helps those with special needs and sensory issues find a safe and comforting form of physical activity.

It provides swimming lessons that benefit a person throughout their lives.

It provides a place for a family to have fun together in a healthful environment.

It provides a venue for our young children and teens to become disciplined, fit community members  through grueling training that provides lessons for life.

It is a place for fun, alternative, cardiovascular activities including the exuberance of Aqua Zumba, the intensity of underwater hockey and water polo, and the magical experience of scuba and generating revenue along the way.

It acts as a counter to many of our society's challenges; obesity, disenfranchisement of youth, senior loneliness and the long, cold, cabin-fever winters of Connecticut.


It is one of the few Town Assets that everyone in Cheshire can avail of, regardless of age or ability. It deserves our support.