Getting Public Swimming Pools Open: Ahead of July 4 Weekend, Gov. Polis Takes Action to Ensure More Swimming Pools Can Open & Expand Hours this Summer, Providing More Opportunities for Colorado Families to Swim  

Thursday, June 30, 2022

DENVER — Today, Governor Polis and the Department of Local Affairs announced grants to 71 swimming pools across Colorado received much-needed grants to help ensure swimming pools are open and properly staffed in time for the July 4th holiday and for the remainder of the summer months. Last week, Governor Polis announced the Pools Special Initiative 2022, a plan of action to help swimming pools open and expand hours this summer, as pools around the country have faced workforce shortages. 

“We are helping expand pool hours and get closed pools open so that this July 4th and throughout the summer, Coloradans across the state can safely have fun with family and friends, learn to swim, exercise and recreate at our amazing public pools. We are working with local communities to  get more pools open and expand hours with support for increased pay, more work flexibility, and helping train more lifeguards,” said Governor Polis. 

The Pools Special Initiative 2022 provides incentives to attract and retain public pool employees through the summer and ensure adequate staffing levels to allow pools to open at maximum capacity. The awarded grants support more workforce flexibility, new training for lifeguards, and provide real relief to local communities working to make sure Coloradans can enjoy their summers at the pool. 

These grants help communities find and keep qualified lifeguards, ensuring that pools can increase operating hours and to stay open longer in the summer after many lifeguards return to school in the fall, and expanding capacity to teach life-saving swim lessons. 

Grant recipients include:

  1. Apex Park and Recreation District (Jefferson County)

  2. Arapahoe Park & Recreation District

  3. Aspen

  4. Aurora

  5. Avon

  6. Banning Lewis Metropolitan District

  7. Basalt

  8. Bennett Park and Recreation District (Adams County)

  9. Berthoud

  10. Boulder

  11. Breckenridge

  12. Brighton

  13. Broomfield, City and County of

  14. Canon City Area Metropolitan Recreation & Park District

  15. Castle Rock

  16. Chaparral Metropolitan District (Arapahoe County)

  17. Cheyenne Wells Metropolitan Recreation District

  18. Clear Creek Metropolitan Recreation District

  19. Colorado Springs

  20. Commerce City

  21. Cortez

  22. Craig

  23. Delta

  24. Denver

  25. Eagle-Vail Metropolitan District

  26. Eastern Rio Blanco Metropolitan Recreation & Park District

  27. Englewood

  28. Erie

  29. Estes Valley Recreation & Park District (Larimer County)

  30. Evergreen Park & Recreation District

  31. Flagler

  32. Foothills Park & Recreation District

  33. Fort Collins

  34. Fossil Ridge Metropolitan District No. 1

  35. Fraser Valley Metropolitan Recreation District

  36. Golden

  37. Grand Junction

  38. Greeley

  39. Hyland Hills Park and Recreation District (Adams County)

  40. Inspiration Metropolitan District (Jefferson County)

  41. Johnstown

  42. La Junta

  43. Lafayette

  44. Lakewood

  45. Longmont

  46. Louisville

  47. Loveland

  48. Manitou Springs

  49. Montrose Recreation District

  50. Mount Vernon Country Club Metropolitan District

  51. Mountain Recreation Metropolitan District (Eagle County)

  52. Northglenn

  53. Ouray

  54. Parker

  55. Pinery West Metropolitan District No. 2 (Douglas County)

  56. Pueblo

  57. Rocky Ford

  58. Saddle Rock South Metropolitan District No. 2 (Arapahoe County)

  59. Silverthorne

  60. Smoky Hill Metropolitan District

  61. South Park - Park and Recreation District

  62. Stonegate North Villages Metropolitan District

  63. Stonegate Village Metropolitan District (Douglas County)

  64. Ventana Metropolitan District (El Paso County)

  65. Western Rio Blanco Metropolitan Recreation & Park District

  66. Westminster

  67. Wheat Ridge

  68. Whispering Pines Metropolitan District No. 1 (Arapahoe County)

  69. Windsor

  70. Woodland Park

  71. Yuma

The grant program is a partnership between the Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) and the Office of Economic Development and International Trade’s Outdoor Recreation Industry Office (OREC).

Additionally, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE), in collaboration with local workforce centers, will provide workforce training and support recruitment efforts through their Reskilling, Upskilling, And Next-skilling Workers (RUN) grant. This program will enable individuals to complete training to be certified as a lifeguard or receive related skills (e.g. CPR), and be paid a $1,000 stipend upon completion of the training program and beginning employment as a lifeguard. CDLE will also be issuing an emergency waiver effective immediately and applicable through September 5, 2022 to allow 16- and 17-year old lifeguards to work limited overtime hours (no more than 10 hours per day and 54 hours per week), if deemed needed by their employer, in order to increase available staffing capacity, with overtime rates.

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