SHEPHERDSVILLE - The members of the Bullitt County Parks Board had great plans.
With the Bullitt County Family YMCA contracted to manage the three swimming pools and to run the recreational programs for county government, parks board members began the task of looking for other opportunities to serve the community.
From a spray park in Lebanon Junction to walking trails in all areas, the discussions were impressive.
However, all that may be in jeopardy if rumored cuts to the parks budget become reality on Friday night.
“I’m very upset that they made cuts and didn’t discuss them with us,” said board chairman Steve Larimore. “I was shocked.”
During his limited discussions, Larimore said it appears the budget will be cut around $100,000. This comes after the budget had been cut significantly with the YMCA taking over the sports programs and the pools.
Larimore said the board members were willing to talk about possible cuts but that wasn’t done. He didn’t know what the final numbers would look like after Friday night’s fiscal court meeting.
He did know that the funding cuts in areas like seasonal part-time help and maintenance could cripple the current operations. And it would prevent plans for the future, which centered on walking trails in various parts of the county.
While the YMCA runs the pools, Larimore said the county is still liable for maintaining the facilities. A bathroom renovation was just completed at the Shepherdsville pool and similar work needs to be done at Maryville and Mount Washington pools. However, he didn’t see the $30,000-$40,000 in the budget.
Larimore said he planned to continue the discussions but he was concerned whether any of the plans would be accomplished.
Board members are currently looking at what can be done with nine acres behind Nichols Elementary.
A new draft version of the budget has not been prepared. However, it has been confirmed that the 50-cent per hour raise for all county employees has been cut in half.
The meeting Friday is at 6:30 p.m. at the courthouse. The public is invited to attend.
In other parks business:
*The swimming pool at Bullitt Central is open for business. A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on June 21.
*The Lebanon Junction spray park will be completed in late July.
A fence will enclose the park and there would be no admission charge.
An agreement would be worked out with the city of Lebanon Junction to allow them to patrol and to set the specific hours of operations.
*Board member Kevin Ezell said the YMCA should have the ability to set policies on things such as coolers being brought into the pools.
Ezell said the contract has been signed and the YMCA should be in control.
*Jeremy Galloway talked to the parks board concerning his desire to take over the operation of the two ball fields builds at First Street Park.
Galloway, who is in charge of field maintenance at Okolona ball field, said he could have the fields ready for travel team tournaments in the fall.
Larimore suggested he talk with June Daugherty, director of the Bullitt County YMCA, to discuss the situation. He must also talk with Shepherdsville officials since the city owns the two fields.