Facelift expected for Fredonia Gazebo thanks to Rotary Club

By GREG FOX

OBSERVER Staff Writer

The Barker Common Gazebo in the village of Fredonia will soon be getting a facelift, courtesy of the Fredonia Rotary Club.

During its regular meeting on Monday, the Fredonia Village Board approved a resolution allowing the Rotary Club to “perform certain restoration repair work on the village gazebo, namely construction of a new roof, repairs to the existing woodwork and a complete painting of the gazebo with a plaque commemorating both the original construction and the rededication.”

“It doesn’t get any better than that,” Mayor Stephen Keefe said regarding the restoration work. “The roof needs replacement and that’s a major job. I know a group of us got together with the Rotary and painted the lower section earlier this year and our intention was to go up and start working on the upper end of it. But, as the seasons start to get shorter … they thought to go ahead and contract it out. So, they have contractors coming in to do the work. We certainly appreciate it.”

The Rotary Club built and donated the gazebo to the village nearly 40 years ago.

The village will not incur any costs as a result of the project.

Also as part of the meeting, the board accepted a proposal by Diefenbach Water Systems in Silver Creek to replace the existing domestic water pump and install two reduced pressure zone valves (for backflow preventers) at the Fredonia Water Treatment Plant, as mandated by the Chautauqua County Health Department. The preliminary cost of the project is $6,918.

“We still need two other (valves) installed that will be more expensive than the ones we have in here tonight,” Village Administrator Richard St. George said. “They need engineering plans to do those because they’re bigger, but they are budgeted.”

The board also voted to accept a quote from DFT Communications for a new phone system in the village hall. The current system, which was purchased in 1989 as a used system, is running on only one central office card after another one crashed in July.

A resolution was also passed allowing for the Village Department of Public Works to begin chip sealing and crack filling of various streets at a cost not to exceed $80,000.

The DPW also sent a memo to the board recommending the hiring of a seasonal laborer beginning Sept. 3, but the board did not take any action since a resolution was not yet crafted. Trustee Susan Mackay said two workers are leaving and one will be replaced.

“You’ve got leaves and snow coming up, so there’s always a season for work to be done,” Keefe said. “It sounds like there will be agreement (when we get the resolution). It’s already budgeted, so it’s nothing new to our budget.”

Keefe also addressed recent roadwork regarding oiling and stoning Central Avenue, which coincided with the return of students to SUNY Fredonia and the Farm Festival. The OBSERVER rated that action the “worst of the week” on Saturday.

“I agree 100 percent with the publisher of the OBSERVER,” he said. “However, the problem is it’s a shared service. When the county can do it, we have to have it done. The county had their equipment ready, they brought it and you got to make streets when you can make streets.”

“It comes in at the last minute,” St. George said. “It’s like one of those Thursday afternoon phone calls where they’ll say they’ll be here Monday morning.”

After the workshop portion of the meeting, the board entered into executive session to discuss personnel at the fire department.

The next regular meeting is scheduled for Sept. 9 at 7:30 p.m. in the Trustees Room of the village hall.

Comments may be sent to gfox@observertoday.com