This week during the Budget Hearings at the Erie County Legislature, Legislator Terry McCracken (D-Lancaster, Depew, South Cheektowaga, Alden) made it clear that one of his top priorities is the future of the Erie County Home and the Town of Alden. He questioned both the Erie County Department of Public Works and the Department of Environment and Planning in order to start planning the reuse of the facility immediately.
McCracken said, “The Town of Alden is unique in two of the issues they face: around 40% of their land is owned by the government so is therefore not taxable and the whole Town does not have access to sewer and water. The Erie County Home lies on about 500 acres of land and is not only easily accessible off Walden Avenue but also has access to sewer and water. After February of 2013, the Home will be vacated and Erie County will maintain ownership of the property but now has the opportunity to market the property to the public so that it could be placed back on the tax rolls.”
Legislator McCracken urged county officials to be proactive about planning the reuse of the property.
“This is an opportunity for Erie County to be resourceful and proactive in preventing another huge parcel of land to be vacated. The administration and departments within the County have not presented a solid plan and have not shown of signs of making this the priority it should be. The redevelopment and rebranding of this property should be an exciting project involving the Town of Alden, the Department of Environment and Planning and the Department of Public Works. I have heard loud and clear from elected officials and residents of the Town of Alden that they have concerns regarding this property and we together want to see some progress in identifying where we go from here. I agree wholeheartedly with the residents and town officials that this is a priority and have been working since I was elected to try and prevent this from becoming another deteriorated vacant building owned by Erie County. We need the administration and the Department of Public Works to do a thorough analysis of all buildings on the property to see what can and should be demolished and what can and should remain. I look forward to making this a priority for the 8th Legislative District and working on this exciting opportunity,” McCracken concluded.