Small town politics. My town’s mayor defunded the public pool right after it had been renovated. Totally redone, it was beautiful. He got voted in and closed it to raise money to hire another police officer, supposedly. It was built on the 70s due to the many drownings in our nearby rivers. He closed it because his buddy and major donor is the local gym owner who now gets all of the swim lesson money from the citizens, because he’s got the only pool in town. People protested it and stamped their feet, but the mayor ran unopposed again last year.
Open swim used was $3-$4 for a few hours at the public pool, and swim lessons for kids were super cheap. Now, if you don’t have the money for a $48/mo gym membership per kid over age 3, your kid doesn’t learn to swim. The next nearest public pool is over 35 minutes away. Our HS swim team has to pay over $10,000 per team now to rent a community college pool about 40 minutes away, and there’s a friggin pool sitting in an empty building in town. They can barely scrape by with fundraisers and our water polo teams were champs several years running.