TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The City of Troy will not be unlocking any of its pools this summer but what does that mean for the kids who count on coming here?
“I think kids are going to be a little lost you know there’s going to be some hungry kids in the neighborhood,” Lawrence Milledge, of Troy, said.
Milledge was devastated when I told him both Troy City Pools will be closed this summer, including one right next to his south Troy home. He’s concerned the neighborhood kids he takes care of like his own will have nowhere to go and won’t be able to get the free meal programs provided at city pools.
“You know you never know who’s hungry but I do hot dogs and hamburgers. Me and my wife we do the best we can. We don’t even know the kids but we just hand out what we can.”
The spokesperson for Troy Mayor Patrick Madden, John Salka says it’s not in the budget to fix the pools, an original estimate projected at $500,000 to $700,000 to repair the pools and an additional $100,000 to $125,000 to pay staff and operational costs for six weeks.
Patrick Doyle with the Troy Boys and Girls Club says he’s desperately seeking a way to help.
“There was over 100 kids fed at our pools last summer every single day. With the hunger need the way it is, what possible solution can we have to also assure that kids have a place to eat.”
Doyle says the Troy Boys and Girls Club applied for a grant in hopes of being able to keep their pool open after hours in the evenings for the public and possibly extended weekend hours.
“It is an added expenditure that we did not expect to have, our fingers are crossed. Unfortunately, if it’s not approved, it’s what can we do?”
The City of Troy is waiting for a consultant engineer to complete a condition assessment report on the pools. The City does have 11 spray stations and is also looking at funding avenues regarding youth meal programs and activities.
“We will be a drop in the program again this year where any kid in the City of Troy can come here and eat for free,” Doyle said.
“They could have got this budget money for these kids. These kids going to be lost in June when they get out of school. Watch how many kids are in the street. Watch how the crime rates go up. You’re gonna see it because they don’t have anything to do,” Milledge said.