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As a regular citizen and patron of the Bitterroot Aquatic Center, I was shocked to read the recent article whereby Jim French of the Canyons Athletic Club was questioning the expansion of the BAC facility.

This proposed expansion preliminary cost estimate was recently released and will be discussed in upcoming public meetings, which I hope Mr. French attends. I wonder if Mr. French has done any research on the cost of a government aquatic entity compared to his private facility.

Here are a few which he may not be aware of: Strict ADA requirements, government approved building requirements, as well as a government approved contractor, all of which are more costly than the private sector.

Possibly Mr. French is concerned about competition and the loss of business. I would suggest he focus on the positive outcome for both the community and his athletic facility. Covering the outdoor pool, providing year-round access and adding family bathrooms will be a great asset to this community. Providing more classes, programs and water time for all, in particular, seniors and children at a reasonable price.

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This is an improvement to our beautiful community, an opportunity to make this an even better place to live.

If you have questions, call Fern Schreckendgust at the aquatic center at 406-375-8200. I hope voters will do their research, talk to Fern, or even me and other people who use the pool on a regular basis, before they make a decision that is not based on the facts.

— Marcia Babowicz, Hamilton

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