SYLVAN BEACH — As soon as sunny skies and warmer temperatures become more summer-like and the village gears up for the Memorial Day weekend in a few weeks, officials said the supervised swimming area on the beach will once again be open.
Last year the village closed about 125 feet of public beach and deemed it a “swim-at-your-own-risk” area due to a change in county Health Department regulations. But Village Administrator Michael Sayles said he has been working “several months” to get a permit from the health department to re-open the section.
The change in county regulations was a result of the state changing its testing requirements for blue/green algae. In 2017, the beach was closed for about 30 total days due to blue/green algae blooms discovered in the lake.
“We’re in the final stages of getting our permit from the Department of Health,” Sayles said today. “We’ve got to put out lifeguard chairs and buoys, and signs at the access point. I’ve been working on getting this permit and a plan finalized” with the health department “for many months now, so we knew we were making a lot of progress.”
The village administrator said because the village had been making progress on getting the required permit, officials and trustees have already included hiring lifeguards in the budget.
“We did budget for lifeguards,” he said. The village’s “fiscal year starts June 1, and we just adopted our budget last month.”
Sayles said, “We’re looking to hire six lifeguards. There will be between 2-4 on duty at any one time. Also for the first time ever starting this year, we plan to offer swim lessons for beginners to Group 4 for kids. It will be available for free to residents and people visiting.”
Once the lifeguards are hired, Sayles said the village expects to receive the permit to re-open swimming from the county.
“Then we’ll be open for business,” he said.