KEYSER - After being “called out” on social media about the part he allegedly played in closing Keyser's swimming pool, Mineral County Health Department administrator A.Jay Root went to the Keyser City Council recently to explain exactly which rules govern the operation and any possible renovation of the aging pool.

By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - After being “called out” on social media about the part he allegedly played in closing Keyser’s swimming pool, Mineral County Health Department administrator A.Jay Root went to the Keyser City Council recently to explain exactly which rules govern the operation and any possible renovation of the aging pool.
The rules, he said, are set by the state and not the health department.
“I don’t have a say in it; I am only relaying the information,” he said. “Any construction you do to the pool does not go through the local health department.”
Root told the council and several candidates in the audience that a lot of misinformation has been circulated on social media.
“Somebody stated there was no code because Charleston couldn’t find it, but there is a code and it’s quite easy to find,” he said, presenting the officials with a copy of “Series 16: Recreational Water Facilities.”
Root explained that, because the pool is 64 years old and “there are so many things that don’t meet the current code,” if the city were to seek a permit for any modification of the facility, it would more than likely cause them to have to renovate the entire pool to become compliant.
“It’s not plumbed right,” he said, noting that, for whatever reason, when the pool was built it was not equipped with a circulating water system.
Instead, the water that is filtered out of the pool goes into the sewer system and fresh water must be pumped in - thus the city’s escalating water bill.
“Before the PSC (Public Service Commission) said you had to pay for your water, it wasn’t a problem,” he said.
In addition, the baby pool’s system is hooked into the big pool, and that would have to be separated during any renovation.
“You’d have to have a whole separate filtration system,” he said.
According to Root, the engineer he spoke with estimated it would take “a half-million dollars” to bring the pool up to code.
The council voted in January to not open the pool this coming summer.
They currently have approximately $83,000 in the fund they promised to set aside to renovate the facility in the future.