Residents voice frustrations with pool toy restrictions.
GreyHawk Landing resident Rachel Marcus said her children are getting shortchanged when it comes to enjoying the summer at her community's pool.
She said the community's restrictions on pool toys has caused her to take her 4-year-old, Alexandra, and 1-year-old, Nathaniel, elsewhere.
“A whole summer has gone by and we have barely enjoyed the pool,” Marcus said.
The pool restrictions, established by the GreyHawk Landing Community Development District, prohibit the use of pool toys such as rafts, plastic pails and diving sticks.
GreyHawk Landing’s CDD Chairman Ollie Kyte sympathizes with the residents, but remains firm in his belief that allowing children to bring their toys to the pool would be an “absolute disaster.”
He said they are aware of the rules, and they agreed to adhere to them when they moved to the community.
“The purpose for not allowing toys is that if you have individuals who are there who don’t have children, they want to have a nice, relaxing day,” Kyte said. “Some children are not as respectful of others as they should be.”
Marcus said the rules are “absurd."
She said Nathaniel doesn't walk, and she likes to take him into the pool on a raft. “The raft is a safety thing," she said. "It's not a fun raft that you're going to get wild on. Why is it working that (pool toys) are permitted in other communities but not here? What is happening?”
While some residents in GreyHawk Landing are frustrated by the pool rules, the rules have not changed. Toys and floatation devices always have been prohibited at the community's two pool areas, but residents feel that the guards at GreyHawk Landing have been cracking down in terms of enforcing them.
GreyHawk Landing resident Lexi Rossi moved into the community about three years ago when her son, Colton, was a 3-year-old.
Rossi remembers bringing toys to the pool when the pool restrictions were not a topic.
“I used to bring his favorite imagineXT characters and his Batman doll to the pool when Colton was little, just so that he would have something to do because he couldn’t swim,” Rossi said. “This was not something that people talked about back then, everybody just minded their own business.”
Nicole Truax, a GreyHawk Landing parent, would like the rules to be relaxed.
Truax said when her daughter, Lily, now 7, was a toddler, she used to bring toys to the pool. She said it wasn't an issue.
“I never knew that you couldn't have small toys there because the little things didn't used to matter,” Truax said. “Now, it seems like with the guards going downhill, everybody is having to fight for every small thing.”
Marcus said the CDD just needs to use common sense. She said there is a lot of difference between throwing a football in the pool letting a baby float on a small raft.
Kyte said that he doesn’t foresee the pool rules changing.
“Right now, unless there is a compelling need to change the existing rules, I don't see us changing them,” Kyte said. “However, if new board members come on and they have a difference of opinion, they can change the rules as they please.”