Chehaw and Fowler future unsure - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Chehaw and Fowler future unsure

Albany- Jim Fowler has a plan he says will increase attendance and revenue at the Parks at Chehaw. Park leaders initially voted to work with him but that could change. Fowler's plan includes a $17 million improvement to Chehaw's wild animal park.

He initially told city leaders the plan wouldn't cost them anything but later said his company would need $100,000 up front for marketing and fundraising. Tonight the Park Authority saw a detailed proposal that showed it would cost them even more.

"The figures we saw tonight which just came to us today show not only that $100,000 for the first year but $100,000 for each year after that and I think that's what was confusing to the park authority members because they hadn't seen it presented that way before," says Chehaw Park Executive Director Doug Porter.

That would be $100,000 a year for five years. That's half a million dollars to beef up the park and members say Chehaw can't handle any more debt. The Park Authority asked the city for help paying the initial consulting fee but they question whether they'll be able to come up with $400,000 more.

The city commission has discussed Chehaw's request but has not agreed to pay even the $100,000 the Park Authority requested.

Posted by len.kiese@walb.com