Falconer shop plans moving forward

MAYVILLE – The county is taking another step forward in rebuilding the Falconer Department of Public Facilities Shop.

This week, members of the Public Facilities Committee approved a resolution authorizing the issuance of $250,000 in bonds to pay for the design, permitting, surveys, planning and other preliminary studies, including the State Environmental Quality Review compliance, in connection with construction of public facilities.

Several legislators on the committee said they had been to the current Public Facilities Shop in Falconer, and had also been in contact with Falconer Mayor David Krieg to discuss the shop.

Vince Horrigan, R-Bemus Point, confirmed with George Spanos, director of Public Facilities, that the studies will aim to find the best on-site location possible for the new building, in an attempt to ease concerns of residents living in the area.

Tom Erlandson, D-Frewsburg, said he has heard mixed reviews on the project from the several board meetings he attends.

“Some of the citizens of Falconer, as well as some of the officials in Falconer, are not happy with the facility in Falconer,” Erlandson said.

Erlandson said some of the residents in his area are recommending moving the county shop completely out of Falconer and into a new location. However, Spanos said that while the point was valid, moving the shop to a new location would not be ideal or cost-effective at this time.

“Part of this project is to look for the absolute best place to construct it,” Horrigan said. “In my mind, I’m comfortable that this is the least-cost option. I understand why some people don’t like that big facility there. It’s a residential area. But it’s also been that way. We’re not adding additional traffic, additional operation. What we’re doing is fixing an antiquated, unsafe facility.”

Larry Barmore, R-Gerry, was in attendance at the meeting, as he represents the district in question. He presented to the committee a petition of 153 signatures of people opposing the new shop. Falconer has a population of around 2,400 residents.

The committee passed the resolution unanimously.