Who will manage Shreveport’s pools this summer?

Published: May. 10, 2022 at 4:32 PM CDT|Updated: May. 12, 2022 at 2:41 PM CDT
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Tension is brewing between the City of Shreveport and who will be managing the city’s pools once they open for summer.

Rock Solid Impact has been running the city pools for more than 10 years. However, now there is a possibility an out-of-state company could be taking over.

Shelley McMillian with Rock Solid Impact said for 13 years, she has helped over 18,000 kids learn how to swim.

Back in 2010, six teenagers drowned at a popular recreational area along the Red River. Following their deaths, Rock Solid launched an effort to teach people how to swim through what they called “Project Swim.” These lessons have been free for many children.

Sources have told KSLA that, allegedly, Rock Solid and another company from Atlanta both sent proposals to bid for ownership. McMillian said her proposal was rejected. Right now, there are many questions as to how the city is deciding this, and what the other company has to offer.

“Why are you doing this to our city? Why are you doing this to our community? Not to me, not to Rock Solid, our community. They need this from the people who know how to give it to them and while we came in 2009, and it was baptism by fire, we grew and we learned and we connected these five pools to these five neighborhoods to thousands upon thousands of communities residents,” said McMillian.

Shreveport Councilmen John Nickelson and Grayson Boucher are now requesting complete copies of the contract. In a Facebook post, Nickelson said in part:

“The city’s recent decision to award a contract for management of its pools to Atlanta-based USA Management has generated significant public controversy this week. I was not involved in the decision as a Council member... Councilman Grayson Scott Boucher and I have requested the Purchasing Department’s complete file on this contract. After we have received and reviewed that information, we will be in a position to identify and address and deficiencies in the selection process.”

KSLA reached out to the city for a response. Here’s what the they told us:

Q: Is the city in the process of hiring a company to run the city pools?

A: A letter of intent was submitted to USA Management.

Q: Why is this happening?

A: All contracts over a certain dollar amount must be put up for bid.

Q: What’s the process?

A: The contract was put up for bid. Several companies submitted applications and the applications that qualified were reviewed and scored by a committee.

Q: It’s being said a company from Atlanta was chosen. Is this true?

A: USA Management was the company that was selected.

Q: How could this impact Rock Solid? Why aren’t they being considered to run the pools?

A: The highest scored applicant was awarded the bid.

Q: How much could this cost?

A: $125,000 was the amount last year and that was the same amount that was submitted for the current bid.

Q: What exactly would this company be managing?

A: The contractor will provide and compensate all necessary lifeguards, pool managers, and maintenance personnel to operate pools located at David Raines, Querbes, Bill Cockrell, Airport, and Southern Hills

Q: Will the pools open this summer in June?

A: Yes

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