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Massena Recreation Department begins work on new budget

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MASSENA - It’s budget season for the Massena Recreation Department, and the spending plan could include at least one capital project.

Recreation Director Richard A. Boprey said they’ve “categorized some of our capital projects,” and the one with the most immediate need for attention is a flat roof at the Massena Arena.

“That was kind of deemed as our main capital project,” Mr. Boprey told members of the Massena Joint Recreation Commission.

This winter’s snowfall has continued to accumulate on top of the roof and is causing leaks inside the arena, Mr. Boprey said. He has already been in touch with a contractor to look at the situation.

“The flat roof needs attention,” he said. “It needs to melt before we can get up there. As soon as we get the March thaw, they can come down and look at it.”

John J. Horan, a member of the commission’s Budget Committee, said they’ve assembled a list of possible capital projects, but nothing has been finalized. At this point, he said, they’ve put in their own estimates for what any potential project could cost, but none of those projects has been prioritized by the board.

“It’s a best guess at this stage. We’re still waiting for some estimates,” Mr. Horan said.

Like the list of capital projects, Mr. Boprey said the budget is also in its initial stages. He has been meeting with Mr. Horan and fellow recreation commission member George Trippany, who were appointed to the commission’s Budget Committee.

Mr. Horan said both he and Mr. Trippany have met separately with Mr. Boprey to go over preliminary figures that were provided to village officials for their review. The village’s fiscal year runs from June 1 to May 31.

“We met for about two hours. George and I have met with Rich separately. We’re in the process of looking at revenue to examine whether there is a need for increases in fees,” he said.

As work continues on the budget, the Massena Recreation Department is also thinking about the end of the ice season. The first non-ice event this year will be the Massena Rod and Gun Club’s annual Expo, which will be held April 5-6. The club has already signed the contract for those dates.

“They wanted it that date,” Mr. Boprey said, noting they wanted to avoid a boat show in Clayton, another show in Ogdensburg and Palm Sunday.

He said the final weekend of ice will be March 28-30. Then they’ll have four-and-a-half days to get the ice melted and chipped out and get the inside temperature up before vendors start setting up their booths.

Given the short amount of time between the removal of the ice and the show, it may still be a bit chilly inside the arena, according to the recreation superintendent.

“We want it to be warm enough for their show. It’ll be what it’ll be,” he said.

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