City prepping for big summer

By Per Peterson

Tracy residents have a lot of making up to do this summer — in terms of fun, that is. And part of this year’s plan from the City’s perspective includes the reopening of the Tracy Aquatic Center.

The affects of the pandemic that hit just over a year ago were felt by everyone — businesses were forced to close their doors and students had to learn how to learn from home. And summer just wasn’t the same, either, especially for kids who all of a sudden weren’t allowed to go to the pool.

That will change this summer. Lifeguard training is being planned for early June, and on Monday, the Tracy City Council approved an important resolution that will result in a key fix at the pool, which is planned to open the first weekend of June.

Tracy EDA Director Jeff Carpenter reported to the council Monday that the pool is in need of parts for the recirculation pumps for the splash and lap pools at the aquatic center. The pumps, he said, started to corrode from sitting without water because of the closure of the pool last summer and “locked up” late last fall.

The problem is a reoccurring one, and so is getting replacement parts since there is a territorial issue with the companies that supply the parts needed to get the pumps operational. The City has established a policy that it must obtain a minimum of two quotes for any project of at least $5,000, but because there is essentially just one company that can supply the parts needed, it was requested Monday that the council allow the City to not have to get two quotes. The policy does allow the council to make a sole source exception when necessary.

“We literally can’t get another supplier,” Tracy City Administrator Erik Hansen said.

Because the companies sell only in their respective territories, “it would make it nearly impossible to get a legitimate quote,” Carpenter said. “A sole source is needed in this case. We’re not gonna be able to get two quotes for you, and we need to get this moving.

The recommendation from myself and (Tracy Public Works Director) Shane (Daniels) and Erik would be to go through with this as soon as possible, so we can stay on course for getting the aquatic center open this summer.”

The cost of the project, which has been budgeted for, is $7,800, plus some additional costs for freight.

“We knew this would happen eventually,” said Daniels. “It would’ve been more noticeable if we were to have operated the pool last year — we would’ve known about it. We have money in the budget for it.”

The boiler at the pool will also be fixed this summer, in time for the opening.

Council member Dave Tiegs made the motion to approve the resolution to allow the council to authorize a sole source for the project, with a second from council member Seth Schmidt.

See this week’s Headlight Herald for more on this article.