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In a heavy turnout Wednesday, Elma voters assured the town's 1,200 senior citizens of a place of their own to socialize by approving a referendum to purchase 25.9 acres of land and a partially constructed building on Bowen Road.

The vote was 1,329-1,029.

"I am thrilled the people supported it," said Supervisor Audrey Murdoch, who said she hopes for a late spring or early summer opening.

The voters approved a purchase price of $140,000 for the land and partially completed building but the town has received $105,000 in special grants and has applied for a separate grant to develop some of the surrounding land along Buffalo Creek into a park. Mrs. Murdoch said the town will spend a total of $275,000 for the project but will have to bond $170,000 over five years. That will have no impact on the tax rate, she said.

The town currently rents space from the Iroquois Central School District for $10,000 a year for use one day a week. The rental cost money will go toward the maintenance costs of the new building.

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