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January 7, 2016

C’ville to reapply for park funding

 

By TYRONE L. HEPPARD
Staff Reporter
theppard@cortlandstandardnews.net

CORTLANDVILLE — Unbowed by the denial of an application that would have secured state aid to assist with relocating and expanding Citizens’ Park, the town pledged to continue those efforts during its board meeting Wednesday evening.
In July, the town finalized an agreement with Gutchess Lumber to swap the 6.1-acre parcel that currently is Citizens’ Park on Route 281, with a 90-acre parcel of land at the northeast corner of Gracie Road and Route 13 that the lumber company did not plan to use.
The town plans to relocate Citizens’ Park to that location with the hopeof developing the rest of the landinto venues for sporting events the county would like to host throughout the year.
Last year, the town had applied for part of $16 million in state funding to create a Sports Tourism Center in what would be the new Citizens’ Park, but the town was notified just before Christmas its request was denied.
Garry VanGorder, a member of the Cortland Regional Sports Council assisting the town with securing funding, said this morning denial of the application does not mean the project is bad, only that the state could not fund it at this time.
He added the council and the town have already started the processes of resubmitting a more detailed application he expects the state will receive sometime toward the middle of this year.
“We’re working with the town now to get in on the next round of funding,” he said. “We’re confident we’ll do better next time.”
In other business, the town received notification that the state Department of Transportation will begin surveying the stretch of McLean Road between Deerfield Heights and the county line to determine whether the speed limit should be lowered.
The town has asked the DOT to reduce the speed limit from 55 mph to45 mph there for several years. The town’s earlier requests were denied.
Town Supervisor Dick Tupper said during the meeting that a complete engineering study will be conducted on the road, but there is no indication of when the survey will be completed.
The town also scheduled two public hearings. A public hearing will be held during the board’s next meeting at5 p.m. Jan 20 regarding a request by Royal Chevrolet for a conditional permit to expand its auto sales and repair facility at 3838 Route 281.
The car dealership is looking to build an 11,250-square-foot addition to its existing 20,000-square-foot car dealership building for use as an auto body repair shop.
A public hearing was also scheduled for 2:30 p.m Jan. 14 in the courtroom of City Hall regarding state aidByrne Dairy received in 2012 to build its new facility along Route 13 in the town.
The hearing is a required part of the process in distributing the $50,000 that Byrne Dairy received in December 2012 from Empire State Development to build its facility on Route 13. The facility began operating in 2014.

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