The ballots are in, and the outlook is not good for 's neighborhood pool.
Of 1,963 ballots sent in to Dearborn residents of the Hemlock neighborhood, 486 were returned. Of those, 369 voted against creating a SAD, while 117 voted for the proposal.
Ballots were issued July 13 and had to be returned to the City of Dearborn by Aug. 3. Results were released Saturday, Aug. 4, by Dearborn City Clerk Kathy Buda.
Hemlock Pool is one of two pools that city officials in a series of budget cuts that also included the , and the .
Residents of the Hemlock area were the only to turn in petitions to look into the creation of a Special Assessment District, which would give homeowners the fiscal responsibility of funding the pool's maintenance and operations.
The district boundaries were . Following the June 26 hearing, ballots were sent out to the nearly 2,000 homeowners in the district asking whether they support the SAD.
The cost was estimated to come out to $60-$70 per year for 10 years. Initial capital improvements call for the modernization and reconfiguration of the pool into an L-shaped facility with a zero-depth entry at a cost of approximately $1.3 million.
For now, this SAD vote will mean that Hemlock Pool will remain closed into 2013. However, the reopening could still appear as part of a city-wide ballot initiative.
Leaders of the Save Our Pools initiative have said that they intend to gather the 3,500 signatures required that would tax all Dearborn residents equally and keep all pools open.
SOP member Ryan Woods explained that the group believes an equal share of the costs–which would then give all residents equal access to all city pools–is the best way to save the city assets.
“Across the city is cheaper—it's not divisive,” Woods said.