Fri June 8, 2012
County lawmakers approve funding for Zoo's polar bear exhibit
The Erie County Legislature has approved another piece of the funding puzzle for the Buffalo Zoo's planned Arctic Edge exhibit.
The method of borrowing and whether to go it alone, based on the County Comptroller's recommendation, or borrow through the county's Fiscal Stability Authority remains the subject of debate.
Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have approved funding to help keep the polar bears where zoo goers and the community say they belong: in a planned new state-of-the-art enclosure scheduled to start early next year.
"We have approved $3 million to borrow to help with...the Polar Bear Exhibit, so that under accreditation purposes, we can keep the polar bears, but also have a fabulous experience there to help do some renewal projects that will bring in even more tourism to our community," said Legislator Lynn Marinelli.
Total cost of the Arctic Edge and new zoo entrance project is pegged at $18 million. The Zoo is well on its way to raising the money, but it still has a long way to go.