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Water line would make an impact

CHESTERTOWN The prospect of extending water service a mile south on state Rte. 9 could have dramatic implications for both housing and industry in the Town of Chester, government officials said this week. At the October Chester Town Board meeting a grant application seeking $400,000 was approved by the board to assist in the water-line extension, which would serve both an industrial park and an affordable housing subdivision. The first of these two developments is a proposed 15-plot industrial park project located on Rte. 9 directly across from Peckhams Materials. The lot was bought recently by Peckhams, and the required zoning for the project has been approved by the town and the APA, Chestertown Supervisor Fred Monroe said Monday. The second project is a proposed affordable housing development to be located between Rock Ave. and the Timber Lodge, several hundred yards north of the Peckhams Industrial site, This Adirondack Trust affordable housing initiative seeks to subsidize first-time home buyers by splitting the purchase price of homes between the buyer and the Trust, as well as providing grants of $20,000. The Trust would purchase and own the land underneath the houses, and the homeowner would pay for and own the home, leasing the property from the Trust for $25 per year. If the homeowner sells the house, the financial gain would be split 75 percent to the Trust and 25 percent to the homeowner. When Gillibrand first took office, she asked me what our three most important needs were, Monroe said. I told her that we needed jobs, health care and affordable housing. Monroe said that the town as well as Congresswoman Gillibrand, are actively seeking funding for both the water line and the community developments projects. In last years federal budget, Gillibrand requested $750,000, but the request was denied, Monroe said. Gillibrand has said she will again request by the money this coming year, he said. The $400,000 grant the town is seeking would be on top of the $35,000 DEC Smart Growth grant which Chestertown received this year to be used for fees related to engineering the water line, Monroe said. At present, the Adirondack Trust housing program has received $500,000 of $1 million promised in state funds for affordable housing projects in the Adirondacks. The Trust would begin the Chestertown portion of the program if and when the grant for the water line is approved, Monroe said. Monroe said he hoped the grant would be approved quickly and the affordable housing project could proceed within several months.

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