Neighbors worry violence will spike if Roosevelt Pool closes - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Neighbors worry violence will spike if Roosevelt Pool stays closed

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Toledo, OH - Inside Dis ‘N' Dat Variety Store on the corner of Fernwood and Forest, the owner stands proudly behind the counter in front of hundreds of pictures.

69-year-old Albert Dailey has seen generations of kids grow up.  Many of them kept busy in the summers swimming across the street at Roosevelt Pool.

 "The kids need that pool," says Dailey.  "It's going to be 100 degrees outside. The kids need somewhere to go to keep themselves out of trouble.  The pool is a good inspiration to motivate the kids to do something more constructive with their lives than just hanging on the corners."

17-year-old Vincent Moore remembers swimming at the pool as a kid.  He worries gang violence could spike if it stays closed this summer.

"I think there's going to be more drama going on," says Moore.

Mayor D. Michael Collins is looking for alternative funding to save the pools.  His administration says the 2014 budget is extremely tight and pools are not a priority.  No money is allocated to open six city pools and splash pad in the mayor's budget proposal.

Instead, Lisa Ward, the mayor's spokesperson, is researching what's called the Law Enforcement Trust Fund.

The money is secured by police through drug and property seizures.

The money has been used recently to help pay for SkyCop cameras, the new TPD canine unit dogs, and cameras on TPD motorcycles.    

Ward says there are actually 17 different law enforcement trust funds totaling $807,168.

She says that is enough to cover the pools.  However, the problem is that each fund has different restrictions. 

Ward says, "We have to make sure we can use it for pools.  We will go to the Law Department for an opinion."

Back on Fernwood by Roosevelt Pool, James Harris has lived in his home since 1966.

 "If they close that pool, they won't have anywhere else to go," says Harris of kids in the neighborhood. "Then what are they going to do? They're going to go down and turn the fire hydrants on."

That's a big problem for Dailey who has a hydrant right in front of his store.

"When it gets real hot, they turn the water on and my basement floods sometimes when they do that," says Dailey.

The mayor's spokesperson says next week the Collins Administration should know whether the city can use money from the Law Enforcement Trust funds to pay for pools.

 

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