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Brasher agrees to bond for arena chiller barrel, will seek bids for boiler replacement

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BRASHER FALLS - The Brasher Town Board has agreed to bond for $60,000 to install a chiller barrel at the Tri-Town Community Center and convert the facility from fuel oil to natural gas, but they’ll need to go out for a bids on a plan to replace the facility’s boiler system.

The town board will take out serial bonds and pay for the project over a five-year period, according to Town Supervisor M. James Dawson.

“The town is borrowing (the money) because the (Brasher-Stockholm) Recreation Commission has no authority to borrow money,” he told councilmen this week.

Recreation commission members have been looking to update the chiller barrel as part of infrastructure work on aging equipment at the arena. The chiller barrel is used to cool the Brine and is critical component of the refrigeration system.

A separate project to replace a boiler will be put out for bid after two estimates that were sent in following a request for proposals came in too high. Recreation officials say that, by replacing the boiler, they anticipate savings of approximately $7,000 the first year.

The lump sum base bid from Arnold Oil, Inc., Malone, came in $48,000, while the lump sum base bid from Merkley Brothers Heating And Cooling LLC, Heuvelton, was nearly $36,000.

Mr. Dawson said he had met about a month ago with engineer John Carr, who is working with the Brasher-Stockholm Recreation Commission on the boiler replacement project.

“He indicated he was going to send out a request for proposal for the boiler replacement,” he said.

Because it was a request for proposal and not an official bid process, the bids could not exceed $35,000, according to the town supervisor.

“This was an RFP he sent to people he knew,” he said. “We’ll have to go back to square one and bid again. This time it has to be advertised in the paper. This board can pass a motion to put it out to bid.”

Mr. Dawson told Recreation Commission Co-Chair David Stevens, who was in attendance at this week’s meeting, that they would need to meet with Mr. Carr to talk about the specifications for the project and see if they could be changed.

“We’ll look at the bids,” Mr. Stevens said. “We’re going to have to revamp this whole thing. Maybe we can eliminate something.”

Councilman John M. Keenan wondered if the project would be able to get underway this year now that they would have to go out for bids.

“The sooner, the better, obviously, with the savings,” Mr. Stevens said.

For now, he’ll be arranging a meeting to discuss the project.

“You need to get with the engineer. He needs to come back here with you and Jerry (Mahoney, recreation commission co-chair) and sit and talk about it,” Mr. Dawson suggested.

The Stockholm Town Board passed a resolution earlier in the week voicing their support for the funding plan.

The Brasher Town Board allocated $25,000 from its casino gaming compact fund revenues for the chiller barrel portion of the project, and Stockholm contributed the remaining $985 in January.

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