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Akron Airport is backed for grant

The privately owned Akron Airport received support Monday from the Newstead Town Board for a state grant that will be used toward the cost of demolishing a former residence and barn adjacent to a runway.

The board's action has nothing to do with requests from the Christian Airmen, owner of the airport, to pave a grass crosswind runway and add a five-bay hangar and a maintenance hangar, projects that have drawn objections from many town residents.

State transportation law requires privately owned airports to "obtain local municipal support" to receive state funding. The state Deparment of Transportation has offered a grant matching one received by the Christian Airmen from the Federal Aviation Administration for the demolition costs.

The resolution "in no way binds" the Town, Planning or Zoning boards to any approvals, permits and/or licenses that may be required by the Airmen "for current or future projects."

The five-member board attended a workshop run by the town Conservation Advisory Committee on Saturday at the 18-acre airport off Scotland Road. Carl Klingenschmitt, CAC chairman, said Monday that he hopes to have a report for the Town Board within two weeks, pending the receipt of answers to some questions posed to the Christian Airmen about its plans.

In other business, the board approved a special-use permit for the Newstead Fire Company's expansion of its facilities at 5691 Cummings Road.

The company is adding a 4,800-square-foot apparatus garage and 2,700 square feet of office, storage, meeting and drill space, and the board approved the fire company's use of $700,000 in tax-exempt financing for the project. Both matters were the subject of earlier public hearings at which no objections were raised.

The board also approved a $126,500 contract with Wendel Duchscherer, town engineers, for the design of water line extensions along Tonawanda Creek, Burdick, Maple, Koepsel and Kelkenberg roads, and $6,000 more for services to bid out the construction contracts.

The board also authorized a five-year agreement with the State Police to continue operation of its satellite office in Town Hall. The town will pay the monthly base cost of a telephone and fax line. A recently completed addition to Town Hall includes expanded space for the State Police and town and village courts.

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