Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - 7:30:37 PM

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Residents Concerned About Cost of New M-E Facilities

Maintenance costs and security were some of the concerns voiced Thursday night at a public hearing on improvements being made to Maine-Endwell's athletic facilities.

Thomas Tull, a 1988 graduate of M-E, donated $2.2 million to be used on the construction of a new baseball field and the installation of  lights to the all purpose stadium.

On Thursday, the public was invited to learn and ask questions about the new turf baseball field and light installation.  Some residents say they fear night football games will bring crowds and want to see more security next year.  Others fear what the cost will be to light the stadium and maintain the turf field.

"If you have a free gift, it's like buying a new car.  You get a car, the car's fine or if someone gives your a car, its fine, but you still have to have insurance  you still have to pay for gass.  you still have to pay for maintenance and with this project your still going to have all those expenses that will come along with it," said Maine resident John Samsel.

"We are equating it to there's costs everywhere to maintain grass.  we just have to be smart and strategic in setting aside funds to make sure when the time comes, we can replace and we're talking 8-12 years so we have time to start that process," said Superintendent of Schools Jason Van Fossen.

Van Fossen says the school already has the materials to maintain a turf field. The school's athletic director stated Thursday the estimated cost of lighting the stadium will be about $26 an hour.  He says that would average out to be a total cost of $1,900 for night games throughout the year.

The baseball stadium will be completed by this spring. They hope to start installing the lights for the all purpose stadium by June of 2014.

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