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Town working on 5-year plan for Skaneateles Falls development

Town officials are working on a five-year plan for development of the Skaneateles Falls hamlet as well as nearby areas.

The Town Board discussed some of the projects proposed in the plan, including improvements to Skaneateles Falls Playground and a “rails to trails” project, at its March 6 meeting.

The plan is being put together in conjunction with the town’s application for community development funding distributed annually by Onondaga County. The town plans to apply for the grant this year to get money to improve the playground and basketball court areas at Skaneateles Falls Playground.

The grant application is being handled by town employee Sue Murphy, who works primarily with the parks department, Supervisor Mary Sennett said.

The board was also provided with some insight and tips about the grant and community development planning at the meeting by County Legislator Michael Plochocki, who sits on the county’s planning and economic development committee.

The community development grants are distributed by the county, but actually come from funds from the federal government. The federal guidelines for the money specifies that it should be used to develop areas with low income, however that does not mean Skaneateles should be excluded completely, he said.

“It is understandable that Skaneateles might get less than other communities, but it still should be getting a share and that share, of course, should be targeted at the areas in Skaneateles where the median income is the lowest or where there are other similar financial needs,” he said.

Skaneateles’ five-year plan and grant application are “right on target” and have a good chance to receive funding this year, he said.

Rails to trails, as it was called by Councilor Connie Brace, involves a project to establish trails, along old railroad lines, usable by bikes and pedestrians that will connect the village creekwalk to the northern hamlets.

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