A picture from USA Swimming workshop materials. (USA Swimming)

A picture from USA Swimming workshop materials. (USA Swimming)

Should Skagway build a community pool? And if so, how elaborate should it be? Skagway residents hope to answer those questions with the help of a two-day conference next week.

Consultants Mick and Sue Nelson from Colorado-based USA Swimming will be in town to hear from residents and share their expertise.

The Build-a-Pool Conference was set up by an ad hoc committee tasked with making a recommendation about pool options to the borough assembly. Last fall, the assembly heard from residents in favor and against dedicating millions of dollars to a proposed aquatic center. Proponents said swimming is a life skill Skagway residents need to have access to learn. But others said it would be too much money for a facility that does not provide an essential service.

The assembly considered a one-percent sales tax increase to help pay for the aquatic center, but that proposal failed in a close vote.

The committee decided to bring in experts to help with the decision. The experts work for an organization that advocates for community swimming pools, with the slogan ‘saving pools saves lives.’ The conference is costing the municipality between $3,000 and $5,000.

On Monday at 6 p.m., there will be a meet and greet with the Nelsons at the Pizza Station. The conference gets started at 9 a.m. on Tuesday in the AB Hall. It is scheduled to take place all day, until 5 p.m. On Wednesday, the conference will continue from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Members of the public are encouraged to attend. RSVP to Borough Clerk Emily Deach at e.deach@skagway.org or 983-9706.