The Town of Hamburg does not know yet exactly what the future holds for its Adult Daycare Center, but Town Supervisor Steven Walters said Monday (Feb. 11) during a work session that he knows one thing for sure: the current facility is too small.
Walters said the center, which is located at the corner of Pleasant Avenue and Haviland Place, has begun to outgrow its useful life. Being not only a smaller facility, but also an older one, Walters said it is also getting to be cost prohibitive to continue to operate the center at its current location.
“There is a lot of maintenance that needs to be done,” Walters said.
Without room to expand the current operations, Walters said the town has started looking at other options. This has included seeing if there are any current locations that could be renovated.
However, Walters said to date that has not proven to be successful as the town has been unable to find an existing facility that meets the needs of the daycare center.
According to Walters, the town has now began to explore the possibility of building a new facility.
“Recently we began speaking with one of our own town developers about building,” Walters said. The company the town spoke with is EF Burke.
Martin C. Denecke, director of recreation for the Town of Hamburg, said the future of the program needs to be tied to a different location.
“We’ve outgrown it,” Denecke said, adding there is potential for more participants if it was in a larger location.
According to Denecke, this type of facility is important to help adults who are in need of assistance with the program.
“It’s not necessarily for seniors. It’s for adults who need daycare,” Denecke said.
He said there are several programs run at the operation, including field trips.
“With proper marketing, we could grow this program,” Denecke said.
Another option he would explore is also finding alternative uses for the building when it is not being used for the daycare portion.
He said it has proven to be a successful program so far.
“We’re currently doing pretty well fiscally,” Denecke said, noting that a new facility would attract more people.
Shirley Spaulding, senior program director at the facility, said the number of participants has nearly tripled since the facility opened in 1996.
She said this is one of nine such facilities in Erie County, which has about 58,000 seniors living in it.
According to Spaulding, it is a great price, as the $48 a day includes a lot, such as breakfast and lunch.
She said she has a great staff and those who use the facility are getting “excellent care.”
“We’re highly, highly recommended,” Spaulding said.
Town Councilman Joseph Collins credited Walters for pushing the idea and working on moving it forward.
“Steve, I’m glad you got it to this point,” Collins said.
Walters told Collins and Councilwoman Amy Ziegler he did not need the board to vote on anything, but wanted to get their blessing in regards to moving ahead with Denecke working with the town’s finance department to come up with figures for the “nuts and bolts” of roughly what this type of project would cost.
After the board agreed this was in the best interest of the town, Walters asked Denecke if he could set up a meeting in the next week or two to start working on costs.
Walters said discussion has been ongoing for more than a year. While he does not have a time frame set as to when he would like to see the project completed, the supervisor did say he does not want to see this drag on.
He also said when the time is right, the town will also see if there is grant money available to assist with the project.
“The program has outgrown the facility it is in,” Walters said.
• Also on Monday, Walters expressed concern over a proposal in Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s tentative budget in regards to sales tax laws involving Industrial Development Agencies.
According to Walters, under the current structure, IDA’s get a certificate for a sales tax exemption so they do not have to pay sales tax.
Under Cuomo’s proposed plan, the plan would mean IDA’s would also have to go before a state regional council as part of the sales tax exemption process.
Walters said sales tax would have to be paid up front and then a rebate would be sought through the proposed plan. The supervisor believes this plan would make it more difficult for projects to get financing because companies use the tax rebate as private equity.
His other concern is that under the proposed changes, some companies would not be eligible. He added that recent projects involving Buffalo Computer Graphics and K Technologies, would not have qualified for rebates.
During the regular meeting, Walters submitted a resolution in which the Town of Hamburg would oppose this proposed plan. He asked for and received a “unanimous” second from Ziegler and Collins.
• Walters also told the board Monday that a meeting was held last week in regards to the nearly $2 million Hamburg Public Library expansion project.
He said it is a three phase project, with the first phase being the HVAC component.
Walters said bids for that project should go out in early March and he expects the board to vote on it during the April 8 meeting.
Bids will then go out in regards to building the shell either in late April or early May, and Walters said he expects those bids to be awarded during the June 10 meeting, so that the shell is built and completed by mid-November.
Walters said at a prior meeting that he expects the project to begin sometime in June.
It is expected to be completed in 2014.
• The Hamburg Town Board will hold its next meeting beginning with a work session at 6 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 25. The board will then hold its regular meeting at 7 p.m.