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Orange County Focus

MISSION VIEJO : 2 Hottest Issues Are on Council's Agenda

April 12, 1993|FRANK MESSINA

The hottest issues in town--the construction of a new library and the fate of the Nadadores swim complex--will go before the City Council tonight.

Although the council is not expected to take action on either matter, Nadadores supporters and people backing the library project are expected to show up in force.

As part of their budget deliberations, council members will look at whether the city should spend approximately $250,000 per year to subsidize the Nadadores program.

In 1991, the internationally famous swim team lost its major sponsor, the Mission Viejo Co. The development firm also turned over the team's swimming and diving headquarters to the city, as part of a larger transaction involving four recreation centers.

Now the city must decide whether to spend at least $250,000 annually for maintenance of the swim complex used by the Nadadores. The swim team has raised approximately $450,000 to run the program and has offered the city $17,000 to pay for pool maintenance.

Council members are considering surveying residents to see if they favor subsidizing the Nadadores. The council may also pay the maintenance costs for a year, then decide what to do on a permanent basis later.

Since a ballot measure to provide funding for a new library failed, city staff and a pro-library group have been looking for alternative ways to pay for library construction.

A nine-page report compiled by the city on the library will be released today. The report focuses on state and federal programs that could provide financial support for library construction.

The city has already paid $2.5 million for a library site at Marguerite Parkway and La Paz Road. The cost of constructing the 25,000-square-foot building has been estimated at about $5 million.

The library would be run by the county, which would pitch in proceeds from the sale of the 9,000-square-foot facility being used by Mission Viejo residents. The current library building has been valued at about $1 million.

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