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CHEEKTOWAGA MAY SCALE BACK GOLF LINKS PLAN BOARD WILL DECIDE EARLY NEXT YEAR; 9-HOLE COURSE, NEW BIDS POSSIBLE

The Town Board will wait until early next year to decide the next step toward Cheektowaga's proposed golf course.

The board's pause before heading for the next tee will give it a chance to get the project out of the sand trap, where voters shot it on Nov. 6.

By a decisive 73 percent, voters defeated an additional $1.9 million in borrowing for the project.

That leaves $2 million still available for the project.

"The course is going to be built. The question is now, how we will proceed with it," said Councilman Dennis H. Gabryszak, who as head of the board's Parks and Recreation Committee has spearheaded the project.

A meeting with the town's consultants for the project probably will be held in January, he said.

The board will consider scaling down the project, including reducing it from 18 to nine holes.

If a nine-hole course is built, it will be on the 95 acres north and west of Rehm Road Park acquired through condemnation, Gabryszak said.

The low bid for construction of the course was $2.1 million in May. New bids may be sought, for both nine and 18 holes, and winter may be a better time to draw competitive bids from contractors, he said.

The board also expects to hear presentations from two firms interested in providing alternative financing for the project.

Instead of a town bond issue, the project would be financed privately and the town would pay for it after the course is open and earning revenues, Gabryszak said.

Town Supervisor Frank E. Swiatek said he expects state legislation to facilitate this alternative bond financing of municipal projects such as golf courses.

However, the drawback to this type of financing is a higher interest rate than could be obtained in a tax-exempt municipal bond issue.

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