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Fairmount Park improvements possible

by jmaloni
Thu, Mar 3rd 2011 01:40 pm

by Susan Mikula Campbell

Maybe, maybe not - that's where the Wheatfield Town Board on Monday left plans for approximately $700,000 in improvements at Fairmount Park.

The board decided to go ahead and accept a $350,000 matching funds grant from the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Restoration, but only after it was assured and reassured by its grants writer, Bernie Rotella, that the money didn't have to be used if the board decided to drop all or part of the project.

Rotella explained that the state funds would only arrive as a reimbursement once the town had done the work and showed that the town had contributed its 50 percent share. Rotella also said the board could reduce the scope of the project and that the grant time period can be extended if concerns over the budget deficit and the poor economy prevent action on the project this year.

The proposed Fairmount Park project involves providing a handicapped accessible restroom, new playground equipment, a walking trail with exercise stations and added trees.

•When people see a patrol car parked along a road, they automatically slow down, the board agreed. So, members voted to confirm the practice established by Head Constable Robin Zastrow to use the town's constable cars to deter speeding and other traffic violations.

Recently, an unsigned flyer was delivered to homes in the town titled "Every day I see our tax dollars wasted." The flyer went on to say that a guy in plain clothes "drives to a private company where he parks the car and works as a civilian. ... At the end of the day he takes the car home."

Zastrow explained that during warmer weather, the constable in question was allowed to keep the town's electronic speed sign and a constable car in his driveway. In order to save time and money, he would deploy the sign on the way to work and pick it up on the way home. The sign is moved to a different part of the town every two weeks. The constable worked on Shawnee Road, and Zastrow said he received calls that having the patrol car in that area was helping reduce the speeding problem, so although the electronic sign isn't put out in the winter, the car is still parked on Shawnee Road during the day.

•Residents of the Eagle Chase development off Lockport Road were on hand as promised to find out what was going to be done about the flooding of its main road. The road flooded again on Feb. 18 due to snowmelt primarily coming from a large farm field in back of the northeast corner.

Supervisor Bob Cliffe displayed photos of a truckload of material, ranging from wood to a child's saucer sled, which had blocked a 30-inch pipe that drains the area.

Town Engineer Tim Walck said the road has flooded during the winter at least for the past four years. The developer, Rosal Homes, has improved a protective berm. Construction of a permanent swale at the first lot, allowing the water to flow into a retaining pond, is being considered. Walck said he also suspects the culvert that crosses Lockport Road is too small, and the county is due to replace it either this year or next. Ditches also will be cleaned and residents are being asked to keep an eye out for debris that might block the pipe again.

•The amendment to the section of the town code concerning junkyard regulations, delayed from the last meeting, was approved.

•The next Town Board meeting is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. March 14.

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