PINE ISLAND - Every year, boards are put together to flood a temporary ice rink near the baseball fields on Pine Island Public School's property. This year, that may not be the case.
The school has decided that they no longer want to operate the rink, but currently the school and the City of Pine Island are working out a legal document that would allow the rink to stay on school property, but pass operating and maintenance duties along to the city.
However, there are still some hurdles to jump before the rink can be set up.
"I didn't learn about the possibility that the city might have this rink until later on in the year after our preliminary budget had already been ratified so the city right now doesn't have funds specifically budgeted for staffing and operation of the rink," explains Pine Island City Administrator David Todd.
There's also concerns about if the wood boards that construct the rink are too worn to use, and how to find staffing in time to open the rink. As January is just around the corner and ice skating season is limited, the timing may not be in the rink's favor. "Even getting an agreement in place, hiring some staff or try to find volunteers to staff it and then putting the structure together and flooding it, we're gonna be pushing pretty close to that February deadline," adds Todd.
Whether the rink will be able to open this winter is still up in the air, but as of now the plan is to have it open next year under a new agreement between the city and school.