vanessa-newVanessa Remmers covers Stafford County government and schools for and The Free Lance-Star.

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Swim lane study could be done in two weeks

Families in Stafford’s swim program still have awhile to wait for published schedules for the fall season that starts after Labor Day. Normally, they’re out by now and parents can determine the best times and programs for their kids. “The allocation process really should be underway in early July,” said county administrator Anthony Romanello.

But this year, the Board of Supervisors has unintentionally delayed that scheduling by having a study done on the merits of daily vs. weekly scheduling for the three teams that use Woodlands Pool.

Maria Perrotte, the county’s chief financial officer, presented an update to the board Tuesday about that study:

Dr. Andrew Loerch, from George Mason University’s Department of Systems Engineering and Operations Research, is doing the study for free. He has received information from the teams about preferences for the schedules. It will take about two weeks to do an analysis, and at the point, Perrotte said the report should come to the county. “I’m not exactly certain what format his report will be in. It will depend partially on what he sees and what his observations are,” she told the board. “He would like to sit down and go through his observations and any recommendations he may have.”

When the board decided to do the study because members didn’t think the Parks & Rec Commission used all the data that it could have, supervisor Jack Cavalier added a friendly amendment that it be an independent third party. Perrotte said that Loerch doesn’t live in the county and no family members participate in the swim teams.

“George Mason, in particular, as an organization, that too? We don’t know of any connections here?” Cavalier asked. Replied Perrotte: “I’m not aware of any direct connections with the university and the county other than non-swimming related issues.”

Staff will then work to put together a recommendation for the Parks & Rec Commission. No word on when that would be complete.