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New Petition Aims To Slow Progress On Indoor Pool

May 6, 2014, 5:08 PM by Sammi Bjelland

New Petition Aims To Slow Progress On Indoor Pool

Sioux Falls voters said no to an outdoor pool at Spellerberg Park. But the decades-old debate isn't over just yet.

A group of central Sioux Falls neighbors are circulating petitions to prevent an indoor pool at Spellerberg Park. The initiative petition was filed Monday by a group called Public Pool Partners.

"(The group has) a number of designations set forth, or specifications as far as building an indoor pool." Lorie Hogstad, Sioux Falls city clerk, said. "They talk about roadways. They talk about parking spaces. They talk about size of the property. And the city maintaining a deed of the property."  

Some of the parameters of the proposed ordinance include: 10-percent of construction costs must be raised by private organizations; the indoor pool site must have 4-lane roads surrounding it; and there must be at least 350 on-site parking spaces.

These proposed guidelines, along with others, would make it nearly impossible to build the new pool at Spellerberg.

"They actually have six months to collect signatures on an initiative, which is much different than a referendum. That's about a three-week time period, approximately," said Hogstad. 

But since the City Council is moving forward on the indoor pool this month. David Pfeifle, Sioux Falls city attorney, says the group would have to get the required signatures within the next month to impact the pool's progress.

"They would need approximately 5,200 valid signatures. So that will require in the range of 7,000 to 7,500 signatures for us to take a look and go through and verify," said Hogstad.

If the group does get enough signatures in time, city council would have to decide on whether to hold a special election within 10 days. That would put the pool on hold, and let the people of Sioux Falls voice their opinions again.

Tuesday night, the city council discusses whether or not the recently elected members should have a say in upcoming pool discussions.

If they decide to wait for the two new members, the pool readings would be pushed back.


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