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June 6, 2007

AUBURN — Programs to construct Cayuga County’s very first anaerobic digester are underway, but a lot more than $1 million of the project’s funding stays unaccounted for.

Jim Hotaling, govt director of Cayuga County’s Soil and Water Conservation District, attended the county’s Organizing Committee meeting Tuesday night time to update committee customers on the status of the venture.

Hotaling observed that even though the county initially donated 7 acres of land for the undertaking, much more land is needed.

“We have to have to have extra acres to assist the digester, a buffer zone,” Hotaling reported.

The director famous that added acreage is element of the plan to consist of digester material if a thing ever transpires to the digester.

He famous that about 50 acres of unused county-owned land are positioned around the digester’s web site on County Home Road in Sennett.

“I really don’t know what the extended-vary system for the county is with the assets,” Hotaling claimed.

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Along with the need to have for additional place, Hotaling also famous the project’s enhanced $900,000 cost.

Original projections estimated the digester value at $3.2 million but has since been amplified to $4.1 million.

Hotaling reported the district continue to requirements to protected $1.3

million in funding. The remaining charges have been covered by state and federal funding.

“There is a gap. We will know by August if we can fill the gap,” Hotaling said.

If the hole are unable to be loaded by funding and grants from point out officials or by minimal-interest financial loans from the state’s Electrical power Authority, the district may perhaps appear to the county for assistance, said Dan Schuster, Preparing Committee chairman.

Hotaling predicts that the digester, which will assist the county decrease energy costs and agricultural squander, will be operating by March 2008. The digester will use cow manure and potato waste to develop methane gasoline that generates warmth and electrical power at small value for use by the county. The fuel is planned to to start with be employed at the county jail, nursing residence and the district, all buildings located around the digester website. 

— Compiled by David Wilcox

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