In talking to seniors about a
When I say I support building a Senior Center -- I also have courageous stands on other controversial topics such as the Red Sox, the American flag, and Mom's apple pie -- a question I often get asked back is “How are we going to pay for it?” In fact, this is the best response a voter can give to any promises by a politician or candidate.
At the risk of touching another one of
Why Do We Need One and Where?
To me, it’s a basic city service just as we provide schools, libraries, roads and sidewalks. The services offered for seniors help to connect them to their peers, help them stay independent and active, and let them know that their community values their contributions.
Out of a total population of 17,000,
1) it is centrally located, some seniors will be able to walk there. While it is not close to senior housing located downtown, it is closer to senior housing located at Horton Terrace.
2) the City owns the land, lowering overall cost. Site control is key to any development project.
3) it can fit into the neighborhood and I would say this if I lived right there on
How Do We Pay For It?
The cost of construction will be $5 million. On going operating costs will be similar to what is spent now, since many of these services are already delivered in multiple sites. I think we could also generate revenue by renting out conference space in a way that doesn't impact senior activities or the neighborhood.
Obviously, the City doesn't have $5 million tucked under the mattress. Cost of construction will need to be covered by a mix of fundraising, City and State funds (House Speaker Sal Dimasi pledged $600,000 in October 2004 according to the Octobe 8, 2004 Daily News), and we should also work with our U.S Senators and Congressman Tierney for assistance.
The excerpt below spells it out. According to the Daily News article “Moak begins process for senior center in
The mayor said once
And with those documents in hand, Moak said, he can start a fundraising campaign to help pay for the center, which will decrease the direct cost to the city's taxpayers.
"It may be down the road a while before we ever get to this. But I have to find a location, because we can't do a design of the building until we have a location," Moak said. "And we can't begin to look for money through state or federal grants or local fundraising until we get a design."
The mayor has pushed for months to make
Moak said there should be no concern about this project taking money away from this year's budget process. He said this represents the first step in a long process.
"I'm just getting it in line," he said. "This is not a competition of any money this year or even next fall."
The mayor said he is keeping the center on his horizon because during the last 12 years serving as mayor and city clerk, the need of a senior center has yet to be met. Doing this now, he said, is a way to keep the process moving.
I share the Mayor’s position on the