Schumer Announces Loan Of $4,000,000 To Aurora Ice Association For Indoor Ice Rink In East Aurora
Ice Rink Will Be the First in the Area, Serving Local Schools, Community Children, and Neighboring Areas
U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced that a loan of $4 million has been awarded to Aurora Ice Association, Inc of East Aurora in Erie County. The funds are being awarded through the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Rural Development program as a Community Facility Guaranteed Loan. Federal funds will be used to construct an indoor ice arena. Schumer wrote a letter to USDA secretary Mike Johanns in support of Aurora Ice Association's application for this loan.
"This is great news for East Aurora," Schumer said. "Not only will local students find a safe haven for socializing, exercise, and recreation, but also the rink will offer services for adults, high schools, and the physically challenged. As the rink attracts business from across the region by drawing in customers and hosting tournaments, it will serve as an economic boost for East Aurora and all of Erie County."
Aurora Ice Association, Inc., will used federal funds for the construction of a 65,000 square foot indoor ice arena in East Aurora with two ice sheets. The rink will include a twosheet ice rink facility, with ten locker rooms, spectator seating, public rest rooms, skate rentals, an ice sports pro shop, Zamboni and equipment rooms, food and beverage services, vending machines, and a game room. In the rear of the facility will be a parking lot with space for over 120 cars.
The facility will provide public skating lessons, youth ice sports, training/adult hockey and broom leagues, national and international ice competition, training camps, programs for the physically challenged, high school hockey, figure skating training and camps. In an effort to make the rink as environmentally friendly as possible, "green" building techniques will be used whenever possible and practical.
The proposed ice rink center is a muchneeded recreational facility for East Aurora. No facility in East Aurora or the surrounding towns offer an ice rink, forcing local schools and community teams to drive to Hamburg, Buffalo, Amherst, or even Canada, to find available ice time for practice and games. An ice rink facility not only will serve for practices, but provide a safe community recreational center where kids can gather. The proposed facility is within walking distance of two schools and a Boys & Girls Club, as well as the Olean Street Hampton Inn and a multitude of Main Street shops and businesses, making it in an ideal location.
In addition, the facility will spur the local and regional economy as a host to national and international ice sporting events. The construction of the ice rink facility has already had an immediate positive impact on the East Aurora economy, in that a burnedout condominium complex sitting on the future site of the rink has already been demolished. Another Western New York municipality, Jamestown, recently installed a similar facility, and has already seen new construction and new businesses in the city as a result.
The Community Facility Guaranteed Loan Programs can make and guarantee loans to develop essential community facilities in rural areas and towns of up to 20,000 in population. Loans and guarantees are available to public entities such as municipalities, counties, and specialpurpose districts, as well as to nonprofit corporations and tribal governments. Applicants must have the legal authority to borrow and repay loans, to pledge security for loans, and to construct, operate, and maintain the facilities. They must also be financially sound and able to organize and manage the facility effectively. Loan funds may be used to construct, enlarge, or improve community facilities for health care, public safety, and public services. This can include costs to acquire land needed for a facility, pay necessary professional fees, and purchase equipment required for its operation.