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Potential for pool closures upsets some Milw. Co. residents

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele is set to unveil the County's 2014 budget on Thursday, September 26th, and some residents are already anticipating being hung out to dry. The anticipation of two County pools being shut down is not sitting well with them, even though Abele says a replacement is already in mind.

The two pools in danger of being shut down are Noyes Pool on Good Hope Road and Pulaski Pool on S. 16th Street. Both are indoor pools.

"It's a wonderful pool. I'm glad to have found it. I just moved back into the area and I love it! I don't know why they would close the pool. I think they should keep it open. It's just politics. You just gotta deal with it," Jeannie Paris, who swims at Noyes Pool told FOX6 News.

"I've heard people say 'closing pools.' I think about it as 'opening splash pads,'" Abele said.

Abele says splash pads offer the County an opportunity to get more value for the money.

"Much more used by the public. Cost a lot less money every year to use. Have a lot less capital maintenance for you, as a taxpayer, to pay for," Abele said.

A spokesman for the County Executive says the two pools currently need $4.2 million in maintenance, adding that this money, along with money to operate the pools could benefit more people if utilized for other amenities.

"I mean it when I say, I'm always thinking, 'how can we do more, better, for less?'" Abele said.

Abele's spokesman says the closure of the two pools has been proposed before, by former Milwaukee County Executive and current Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.

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