ONE of Orange's councillors has questioned the level of access residents have to Orange Aquatic Centre with the 50-metre used for other activities, but swimming clubs say the balance is fair.
At Tuesday's Orange City Council meeting, councillor Kevin Duffy put a series of questions to staff about the use of the aquatic centre, saying he had a photograph from a ratepayer of a sign notifying the public the outdoor pool would not be available due to squad swimming.
The sign, placed outside the aquatic centre on an unconfirmed date, read "Squad club night on Mondays 5.30 until close - during this time, the general public will not have access to the 50m [sic] pool and grounds", also apologising for the inconvenience.
After the meeting, Cr Duffy said residents should be able to use the pool outside the heat of the day.
"On January 5, it was still 39 degrees at 4.30pm," he said.
"We don't have a big enough swimming pool to cater for everybody - we need to plan for it in the budget."
He also asked whether water polo closed the pool to the public on Thursday nights, however Orange Water Polo assured the Central Western Daily it only used the deep end of the pool or the diving pool, leaving the rest available for public use.
Cr Duffy also queried weather-induced closures of the aquatic centre during the month, saying other outdoor staff were still working.
However, Orange Aquatic Club president Michael Thornhill said fortnightly Monday night competition meets had been the norm for a number of years to get swimmers race-ready ahead of school swimming carnivals and he had never received a complaint.
"The outdoor pool is open for 37 weeks a year and we use it for 10 of those," he said.
Mr Thornhill said the last meet the club held was on January 6 and the club decided to relinquish two lanes for public use due to the heat.
"We condensed our program and brought it back to six lanes," he said.
He said the club intended to do the same on January 20, but also pointed out reserving lanes at the aquatic centre was no different to netball or cricket matches on public fields on Saturdays.
If the money was available, he supported the addition of another pool to cater for more swimming lessons.
Peter Archer also runs coaching sessions on Monday nights, on alternate weeks to the aquatic club, and he was contacted for comment.
A council spokesman confirmed a report would be prepared on Cr Duffy's questions for a future meeting.
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