Just two months ago, Price City's tennis courts were scheduled to be shut down at the end of October in preparation for an expansion of recreation activities at and near Washington Park. But now, two months later, the tennis courts will have their shelf life extended for at least a few more years.
The Price City Council finalized a plan on Wednesday to join in an memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Carbon County School District in an effort to help keep the tennis courts open for use by the public. The MOU and everything behind it is the near two month effort by a committee formed to save the tennis courts from being closed down by the city.
"It has been a monumental task," to keep the courts open, said Councilwoman Jeanne McEvoy.
Upon hearing of the news that the tennis courts would be shut down at the end of October, the committee began searching for support from entities in the community including Price City, Carbon School District, Carbon County and many others. Their efforts found that those three entities all agreed, in various forms, to support keeping the courts open for the short-term while working on ideas for a long-term plan for tennis courts in the area.
The current plan supported in the MOU between Price City and Carbon School District will see the courts get a small makeover by way of re-patching of the playing surfaces. Nick Mahleres, a member of the tennis courts committee, said the work would help expand the life of the tennis courts for a period of 1 to 3 years. The money for the project, a total up to $35,000, is split between both Price City and Carbon School District.
"This money will help in figuring out a long term solution for the tennis courts with the city, county and school board," Mahleres explained to council members at the meeting.
As for maintenance of the courts, Nick Tatton, Price City community director, said the MOU calls for $1,000 to be spent per year for the maintenance by both the school district and the city.
One question that floated around the project was whether or not the tennis courts would be open through the entirety of the MOU between the school board and Price City. Tatton confirmed at the meeting that the courts would be kept open through the entire period as outlined in the agreement.
The city received bids for the work that fell under the amount of funding proposed for the project. However before a bid is chosen, research will be done to look into bidders including checking references, licensing and insurance, according to Gary Sonntag, Price City Public Works director.
McEvoy, filling in as Mayor Pro-tem in the absence of Mayor Joe Piccolo, said the work by everyone involved in the project, especially from the tennis courts committee, has shown that hard work in pursuing goals can lead to an outcome similar to this. But while the weeks long effort to keep the courts open in the area was a positive, now the prospects of finding a plan to build tennis courts for the long-term come into play. The project, McEvoy explained, needs to move into the second phase of the work project by building permanent courts.
"You still need to keep up the momentum going into the second phase of the project," McEvoy said.