Moundsville to Pay For Equipment for Four Seasons Pool

Photo by Alan Olson Moundsville Councilman Allen Hendershot speaks against contracting with the Marshall County Recreation Board to help manage the city’s parks and recreation facilities.

MOUNDSVILLE — City council took action on Moundsville’s Four Seasons Pool with a unanimous decision to purchase a crucial component for the pool’s operation Tuesday.

Moundsville leaders were not unanimous, however, in their decision to reject a proposal from the Marshall County Recreation Board to help the city manage its parks and recreation facilities.

City Manager Deanna Hess spoke about the urgency of the issue before council cast its vote to approve the purchase of a Dectron brand HVAC unit, which Hess said was bid at a cost of $190,399. A previous feasibility study determined the pool needs about $800,000 worth of repairs.

“I had presented a bid back in March for $190,000, and this was to remove the Dectron from the inside, to the outside,” Hess said.

“As of now, if we don’t do something now, we’re going to have to shut the pool down, because the health department has been there. They said I either fix it or I have to close it. I need a decision as to what you gentlemen and ladies want — if you want to close it, fix it, make it seasonal. We can’t keep going on the way we’re going, because I’m afraid someone’s going to get hurt.”

The motion to approve the bid and install the HVAC unit passed unanimously.

“I think what we need to do is get behind whoever is in charge and make something happen. We cannot just sit on our hands and rear ends,” said Councilman David Wood. “We have to allocate money if we’re going to keep it open, and personnel, and we’re going to have to promote and manage properly, and there’s a lot of things to be done. We need to get behind it.”

In a related matter, council declined to move forward with a contract with the Marshall County Recreation Board to have a team of employees, including board member Craig White and his assistants, to help manage the city’s parks and recreation department in the wake of former Parks and Recreation Director Marc Baker’s resignation.

Council was divided on the matter, with Mayor Eugene Saunders and Councilmen Allen Hendershot, Phil Remke, and David Haynes voting against the contract with the county board. Wood joined Councilwomen Judy Hunt and Ginger DeWitt in favor of the measure.

After the motion failed, Hendershot said the city should look to hire in-house for the position, rather than contract with an outside agency.

“The package that Mr. White offered is a very good one, but … I think Mr. White made it clear they would be an administration, they would not be an arm of the city. We hire a person who’s going to be the director, in a pinch, they’ll do what any other employee can do.”

Hendershot later added that the city would likely explore other options, including a list of prospective candidates which Hess had provided to council members, to fill the position. Hess declined to comment on the options presented.