Senator Schumer urges funding for Watertown YMCA, ‘will get Jefferson County economy moving’

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In this June 16, 2020 photo, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of N.Y., speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — A U.S. Senator is continuing his push for funding for the City of Watertown’s YMCA community center project.

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer called on the Department of Defense on August 4, 2020 to approve Jefferson County and the YMCA’s application for $9 million. The funding would be support from the Defense Community Infrastructure Pilot grant program whose mission is to enhance infrastructure for military families and improve the quality of life.

According to Schumer, he made a personal phone call to Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper, pressuring support for the project.

The Watertown YMCA project is planning to convert a vacant building in downtown Watertown into a community center. The completed center would consist of a six-lane lap pool, full-size recreational pool, three exercise rooms, an art room, two indoor tennis courts and community kitchen.

The project currently has support from Jefferson County legislature and backing from Fort Drum.

“The YMCA plus Watertown plus Fort Drum is a winning formula for a healthier and more vibrant community. That is why I personally called Defense Secretary Esper to urge him to approve the grant for $9 million to complete this vital project. As New York recovers from the effects of the COVID pandemic, this project and the YMCA will be integral to rebuilding a sense of community and boosting the economy,” said Senator Schumer. “A new YMCA community center in Watertown will improve the quality of life Fort Drum’s families and North Country residents while energizing the regional economy.”

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