Your Voice: Split opinion on swim center
Sep 26, 2013 | 3547 views | 1 1 comments | 299 299 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Swim center would be boon to disabled residents


I attended my first City Council meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 17. It was informative and interesting but became downright frightening as I found myself standing up to speak!

The promise the City Council made to build an aquatic center is personal to me. I was born with a hereditary nerve disorder that is slowly eating away at the protective tissues that cover the nerves in my body and will ultimately affect my son, as well. My days of skiing, kickboxing and surfing are long gone, and so is my ability to chase my youngest son around the yard or run alongside him while he flies a kite. Overall, my competitive life is over, but one sport remains — swimming!

Once I was diagnosed, I submerged myself in research. I learned everything there is to know about this disorder and even taught my doctor a thing or two about this situation I was born into. No matter what my doctor said, I could still swim! So I was very excited to find the Tracy Tritons, a competitive swim team here in Tracy. Molly and her staff are wonderful, and the parents are always willing to help, teach and support each other. Everyone cheers for everyone else’s kids. The experience is tough, rewarding and overall a fantastic way for my son to ward off this hereditary disease for as long as possible by staying active.

When we moved here, I searched for any and all disabled services in Tracy but sadly found next to nothing. Tracy is a wonderful place, and I’m proud to be a part of the community, but unfortunately the disabled are dramatically under-represented and left to fend for themselves. The worst part is that every single one of us can become disabled in a heartbeat. Car accident? Medical issue? No one plans to be disabled. So in my view, this is an important issue that needs to be addressed and cared about.

Nicole Howard, Tracy

Sam makes sense on swim center


Sam Matthews’ column on Friday raised some questions about city swimming pools. Every time I walk my dog in Dr. Powers Park, I go past what looks like a perfectly good venue for recreational swimmers. It hasn’t been open for a long time and some people have to leave town just to give their children swimming lessons.

Sam asked (a) can we find some money to fix it up, to make it once again a viable location for kids in the area. Whatever the cost, it’s got to be thousands or millions less than the proposed new aquatic center. Or (b) the city can’t afford to operate the existing pool. If this is true, where is the money coming from to run and maintain a much larger and fancier aquatic center? I hope the city is not going to build another Tracy Transit Center, a mostly unused $12,000,000 monument to hope.

“Build it and they will come” may work for baseball but not with the Union Pacific. Let’s make the most of what we have.

Pull Friday’s paper out of the recycling and read Sam’s column, it’s a good one.

Richard Staas, Tracy
Comments-icon Post a Comment
September 28, 2013
If anyone believes this aquatic center has anything to do with a competition swimming pool, I'm afraid they will be disappointed. The company given the go-ahead even stated they do not build competition pools. I really feel for those like Ms. Howard that are waiting for a pool that will not be a reality. Mr. Matthews has the right idea - economics vs. pie in the sky!

We encourage readers to share online comments in this forum, but please keep them respectful and constructive. This is not a space for personal attacks, libelous statements, profanity or racist slurs. Comments that stray from the topic of the story or are found to contain abusive language are subject to removal at the Press’ discretion, and the writer responsible will be subject to being blocked from making further comments and have their past comments deleted. Readers may report inappropriate comments by e-mailing the editor at