Plans to raise funds and fill the municipal swimming pool fell apart during a special meeting of the Olney City Council held Monday, June 17, after a group of citizens spoke against the changing of the ordinance and City Council members expressed concerns about several aspects of the plan.

A group of local citizens came together a few weeks ago and formulated a plan to raise money to fill the city pool with water purchased from the city of Graham. 

Debbie Sandlin, former City Council member, spoke on behalf of a group of citizens who opposed the plan. 

During her presentation, Sandlin said she had received more than 25 messages from concerned citizens who asked her to speak on their behalf. The concerns about the project centered on the city changing its ordinance, the message that sends to residents and ongoing drought conditions in the state.

“This isn't against anybody,” Sandlin said. “This is not against the children. It's about a drink of water. It's about the message that the council is sending. I have been accused of having no compassion or understanding. I have even been told I shouldn't care because the water is not our water and it won't cost the city. I sincerely wish I could make those people understand that water becomes a commodity more precious than gold when it is gone. But no matter, I will not stop speaking out about this. If this ordinance is changed, it will become immediately more difficult to enforce any ordinance.”

She noted that residents in town who are complying with the ordinance are watching their trees and yards die, and said changing the ordinance to allow the pool to open sends the wrong message to the community.

(For more of this story, check out this week's edition!)