The 24-year-old aquatic center at Tuloso-Midway High School is in need of repairs, school officials said Monday, some of which may affect the facility's ability to host swim meets if they are not made.

Trustees for the Tuloso-Midway Independent School District were presented with a budget change order to help pay for new bleachers and swimming blocks at the facility, which is currently estimated to cost about $35,000.

"As things tend to age in a water-related facility, things need to be replaced," said Carol Sue Hipp, assistant superintendent for business and operations at the Tuloso-Midway Independent School District.

A judge with the University Interscholastic League has expressed concern, Hipp said, with the state of the facility's swimming blocks.

"He said he'd been concerned about the starting blocks in the past, but it was not a problem of safety. It was more of a problem of fairness," Hipp said, adding that bent blocks can lead some swimmers to get off to slower starts than others.

"He was insinuating that the next time he does a swim meet here, he would have to close down Lane 8 and then only let them swim in seven lanes," Hipp said.

New blocks are expected to cost the district about $20,000, she said.

Also of concern is the state of the swim center's wooden bleachers, which have started to deteriorate faster than maintenance can keep up with them, Hipp said.

"Physically, they are very, very loose. If you happen to sit on the far bleachers, please be careful not to sit on the end, because if you do, and someone's sitting on the other end, it's like a see-saw," she said.

New aluminum bleachers are currenlty estimated at $10,000, Hipp said, though it will likely lead to a lower number of people able to be seated in them.

"They will not hold as many people as we currenlty have, but we feel like they'll last a lot longer," she said, adding wooden bleachers would likely cost from $60,000 to $70,000.

"I think this is a great decision," said trustee Felix Landin.

The swim center is used by the Tuloso-Midway High School swim team, as well as swimming classes for elementary school students. The Calallen, Alice and Corpus Christi independent school districts also pay $75 per day to use pool.

The district, this year, has earned over $2,300 from those agreements, with school officials expecting to make over $5,000 by end of December.

The board unanimously approved the change order Monday, with $25,000 coming from the district's Tuloso Road Fund, Hipp said. The rest will have to come from another source, she added.