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Manlius Town Board gets briefed on upcoming turf vote

Voters will soon be heading to the polls March 5 to cast their ballot on a turf field stadium at Fayetteville-Manlius High School. The proposed $4.6 million project was briefly discussed at the Jan. 23 Manlius Town Board meeting with a presentation by F-M Superintendent Dr. Corliss Kaiser. Town councilors John Loeffler and Sandra Schepp were not present.

Kaiser listed amenities to include raised bleachers with a seating capacity for 2,500 spectators, restroom facilities, a concession area, lighting and a perimeter fence for security.

According to a handout given at the meeting, the new stadium and artificial turf field, built to the size of a soccer field, would benefit F-M students by providing enhanced and extended physical education activities as well as a safer practice environment. Additionally, there would be an increased number of sporting events taking place, Kaiser said. Currently, 35 athletic events are played on the field. With an artificial turf field, that number would climb to 468 -- with no additional maintenance costs.

In order to receive state aid for a turf field stadium, the project must be linked to some type of construction work on the high school campus. Repair work in the library with an estimated cost of $50,000 is part of the referendum.

Just months ago, another referendum was set for December but was cancelled due to health concerns about the rubber crumb infill. Since then, the board of education has approved alternative infill options that include recyclable thermoplastic material and/or sand pellets in place of crumb rubber. Drainage would also be installed under the field and all the water collected by this drainage would go into an existing storm water drain.

The estimated tax increase, after factoring in state aid, would amount to $5.30 per $100,000 house assessment. Over a 15-year financing period, the total cost would come to $79.50.

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