SONORA (CBS13) — Construction of a new pool has a few Sonora taxpayers hot, saying they never voted to pay for a large aquatic center.
A group has filed a lawsuit against the Sonora Union High School District, saying the world “pool” was never inserted into the language of the bond voter approved.READ MORE: Grass Fire Threatens Structures In Elk Grove
Sonora High School is getting an update, transforming the campus built in the 1900s in many ways.
Larry Coombs’ friend helped raise the funds to renovate the pool in 1994, and he admits it’s falling apart more than 20 years later.
Principal and soon-to-be district superintendent Pat Chabot says it’s not worth fixing. Chabot and the rest of the school board planned a large aquatic center for the swim and water polo teams that’s being paid for with the same Measure J bond used to update the rest of the school.
But construction is on hold until the district deals with a citizen group lawsuit Coombs is a part of. He says he didn’t vote for a new pool.
“You can read through the bond, and there’s no mention of a pool or an aquatic facility,” he said.READ MORE: Man Arrested After Road Rage Incident Involves Gunshots, Illegal Fireworks in Modesto
Chabot says the word pool isn’t in the bond, but the pool has always been a priority.
Coombs says his citizen group wouldn’t have sued if voters could decide on the pool in a second ballot, but they were shot down.
“By not telling the public then we don’t have an opportunity to decide how you spend our money,” he said.
Chabot says the board doesn’t want to pay for another election.
Taxpayers could end up in the deep end as the school district estimates the construction delays and lawyer fees have taxpayers paying an extra $300,000 for the project.MORE NEWS: Many States Ending $300 Federal Unemployment Benefits Early
A judge is expected to make a ruling in the next few weeks on whether pool construction will resume.