Park District of Oak Park could bump pool pass rates

Discounts for children, seniors, families could be dumped

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By Ben Meyerson

Chicago Journal Editor

The Park District of Oak Park is considering dumping its multi-tiered pool pass pricing, opting instead to charge the same price for each person.

That proposal would wipe out current rates, which gives discounts to kids 1-5, seniors, families, and the disabled.

Instead, each person would simply buy an individual pool pass.

The only two groups who would pay less under the proposal would be people who currently just buy a single individual pass, and households of two.

The proposal won't make a big difference to the park district's bottom line, said Superintendent of Business Operations Karin Schindel, but it'll streamline their operations.

"It's going to create more equity in the pass types," Schindel said. "This is pretty much revenue-neutral for the district, but it’ll create more maintenance efficiencies."

Schindel estimated the bottom line will be an extra $22,000 for the park district's coffers: roughly $310,000 in revenue with the new model, up from about $288,000 under the old model.

The proposal is one of the park district's proposals in its 2011 budget, which it held its first hearing for on Thursday, Sept. 30. The next budget meeting is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 14 at the Hedges Administration Center, 218 Madison Street in Oak Park.

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Laurel Saltzman from Oak Park  

Posted: October 4th, 2010 9:45 AM

What a hit to families! As it is the pricing structure isn't great. Why not give families the option of a "parent pass" so either parent could go to the pool with the kids w/o each parent having to buy a pass? How about an "end of summer" pass? Away for part of the summer? Instead off having to buy a pass for the whole season, how about just for a month, or something like that. Instead of less options, there should be more!

Marilyn Macoun from Oak Park  

Posted: October 1st, 2010 7:44 PM

My husband and I have been using the Oak Park Pools and are eligible to use the disabled and senior rates. We enjoy excercising in the summer for a reasonable price. We have been enjoying the pools since 1979 when our kids were young and haven't missed a year since. The article says it won't make a difference to the park district's bottom line, but it definitely would to our bottom line, especially in this economy. I would hate to have to stop swimming.

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