Newport Beach Considers Building Junior Lifeguard Headquarters Despite Funding Shortfall

March 6, 2021 Updated: March 7, 2021

Newport Beach will consider raising its junior lifeguard program tuition to build a $4.9 million headquarters near the Balboa Pier, during its March 9 meeting.

The current junior lifeguard facility consists of a 2,160-square-foot trailer system that lacks a restroom, locker room, and running water.

In order to fund a replacement of the facility, the summer junior lifeguard program would increase in price by an extra $129 per participant.

The proposed 5,145-square-foot beachside facility would include locker rooms, showers, and a public restroom.

More than $2 million from Newport Beach’s general fund would go toward the project’s $4.9 million price tag, while an additional $1.75 million would come from the junior lifeguard program.

Another $1.1 million is needed for construction.

To offset the funding gap, the city plans to raise the program fee from $727 to $856, beginning in summer 2022.

The seven-week junior lifeguard program runs yearly from late June to early August. Sessions are offered daily from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

During the junior lifeguard program’s off-season, the facility will be by the city’s recreation and senior services department. It will use the facility for fitness and educational classes, community meeting space, and other recreational programming.