Cities with a swimming pool that is not fully compliant with the latest Americans with Disability Act rules received a temporary reprieve last month.

The last edition of the Legislative Update reported that cities that operate public swimming pools must take action to ensure they are in compliance with the 2010 Americans with Disability Act (ADA) Standards for Accessible Design by March 15, 2012.  For example, most swimming pools must have at least one accessible means of entry for those with disabilities. 

However, the U.S. attorney general pushed back the March 15 compliance date by recently signing a 60-day deadline extension. The compliance date with respect to existing swimming pools, wading pools, and spas is now May 21, 2012

The attorney general also signed a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking public comment on whether a 180-day extension of the deadline is needed to allow pool operators time to comply with the standards.

League staff submitted a comment letter to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) supporting the proposed six-month compliance extension date.  In the letter, the League urged the DOJ to further extend the deadline because of the substantial financial hardships the requirements place on many cities.  The League also informed the DOJ that many cities indicated that they will be forced to shut down their community pools because of the new standards.  An extension will help ensure that cities are able to alter planning, bidding, and construction procedures to implement the new requirements in a manner that balances the needs of persons with disabilities with the fiscal obligations of the city.

The rule extending the deadline, and the proposed rulemaking on the 180-day extension, is available at  League staff will continue to monitor this issue and provide updates as they are available. 

TML member cities may use the material herein for any purpose. No other person or entity may reproduce, duplicate, or distribute any part of this document without the written authorization of the Texas Municipal League.

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