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Catskill Community Center on the block for $1.5M

Jul 29, 2020 6:00 am
Sarah Trafton is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media the Catskill Community Center has been listed for sale, with an asking price of $1.5 million. Catskill Community Center Board of Directors President Jeff Friedman described the board's decision to sell as “gut-wrenching.” “We’d love to continue the programming we have,” he said. “We have planned for years to even expand our programming, but we can’t do that without money. The village discontinued funding, now the town is discontinuing funding. In every other community [with a community center] municipal funding makes up the lion’s share of the budget,” Friedman said. Former Catskill Town Supervisor Doreen Davis said the town would maintain its annual contribution of $100,000 in the 2020 budget. Friedman is anticipating a dramatic cut for 2021. The village stopped contributing to the center 14 years ago, Village President Vincent Seeley said. “At that time, the town of Catskill started to fund them,” Seeley said. “It was supposed to be starter money to get the center back on its feet..." The center maintains its 13,000-square-foot building and 15-person staff for less than $200,000 a year, Friedman said. For the past 18 months the board has been evaluating the center’s role in the community. “We are studying numerous options,” Friedman said. “We are looking at having programming at another location, having a limited set of programs at several locations or no programming at all and using the money from the sale of the building and all leftover donation monies to create an endowment to fund programs in the community.” The board has yet to identify specific alternate locations. Executive Director Margaret Tomlinson said the center, “...is close to the hearts of a lot of people in Catskill.” The Main Street landmark has been a part of village life for more than a century, first as the YMCA in 1909, and then as home to the Catskill Boys Club in 1939. Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.