The Estherville City Council agreed to move ahead with the expansion of the Parks and Recreation Swim Team program.
The approval authorized the unbudgeted appropriation of $4,150 to fund the program, which the Parks and Recreation Department will offer in partnership with the Regional Wellness Center.
The city will pay for the cost of the coaches and their travel expenses as well as any league fee or tournament entry fees.
Council member Larry Anderson noted the summer swim program and the little league also are subsidized to some degree.
As reported last week when the Parks and Recreation Board reviewed the proposal, the Estherville Parks and Recreation Department has long supported a summer swim team program. There is no fee for that program.
Essentially, the winter program would be a city recreation program facilitated by the RWC. By partnering, the program would me made available to all students in Estherville, no matter their financial situation or whether they are an RWC member or not.
The eventual goal of the program is to have 75-plus participants. Sixty-five youth took part in the summer swim team program in 2012.
While it may take a year or two to build to that goal, it is believed the interest in participating is strong in Estherville as long as costs do not become prohibitive.
Since the goal is to make the program to all interested participates, the fee of $40 is proposed.
A 25 percent discount would be offered for those on the school "reduced" lunch program and a 50 percent discount for those on the school "free" lunch program.
A system will be worked out with families with multiple children in the program to make it affordable.
The fee would include use of the RWC pool during the swim season, both for organized practices and individual swimming for non-members of the RWC.