Albion approves swingset in memory of parks advocate

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 10 January 2014 at 12:00 am

ALBION – For years she served on the Albion Recreation Committee and was a cheerleader for the local parks and the youths that played there.

Soon a new swingset will provide more than exercise and thrills for youngsters. The swingset will serve as a memorial for Kathy LaLonde, who was 54 when she died on Oct. 6 after fighting cancer.

The new swingset will go at Pee Wee Park, a part of Bullard Park with playground equipment for young children. The Village Board approved spending $3,727 for the swingset during its meeting on Wednesday.

LaLonde had volunteered in recent years by spearheading a long-term master plan for Bullard Park. The village sought a state grant to implement some of those improvements but was denied in the most recent funding round.

In other action at Wednesday’s meeting:

Sgt. Joe Fuller notified the village he plans to retire from the Police Department in June after a 20-year career.

Larsen Engineers did an initial survey of village-owned buildings to see if the sites are good candidates for installing solar panels to help reduce the village’s electric bills.

The company looked at the DPW garage on Washington Street and sewer plant on Densmore Street. Those buildings have enough space for panels that would cut Albion’s electric bill by 17 percent, according to Larsen.

The village would like more savings than that if it pursues a solar project, village officials said.

DPW Superintendent Dale Brooks said he will work with the firm to identify other possible locations. Larsen worked with Medina to install panels at the Medina DPW and at the Wastewater Treatment Plant, a project that Brooks said has been a success in cutting Medina’s electric bills.

The board renewed the lease with the Orleans Economic Development Agency. The EDA will pay $22,080 in 2014 to use the second floor of 121 North Main St., a village owned building. That is up from $21,600 in 2013. The EDA will pay a monthly rent of $1,840.