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$61,000 cost to repair state lawn disputed
ALBANY -- The $61,000 price tag to repair the West Capital Park, outside the New York State Capitol, is drawing criticism from a state lawmaker.
Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin, R-Melrose, has been seeking a line by line breakdown of the cost to repair the park that was heavily damaged earlier this year. The Office of General Services recently wrote McLaughlin and broke down the costs for the repairs.
The breakdown was not line by line.
According to the letter the state spent $9,686.40 on 40,000 square feet of sod, $13,200 on 600 yards of topsoil, and $38,081.68 on Per Diem labor by non state employees.
Office of General Services Commissioner, RoAnn Destito, said because of other projects it was her call to hire non state workers to help her staff finish the lawn.
"We made the decision that we would use some of our staff and we would have Per Diem people come in and supplement our staff," Destito said. "We have the whole complex to take care of here in the state capital."
However Assemblyman McLaughlin views the spending as wasteful.
"I think it is indicative and people can get their arms around the way the state can sometimes apparently waste money that the private sector would not do," said McLaughlin.
The project started in early April and is expected to be finished, with the barricaded portions of the park open again, by next week.