Tuesday, June 24, 2008

CC Cash Flow and delay present big problems

The Lancaster County Convention Center Authority has $400,000 in expenses it cannot afford to pay as of May 31, it was reported Monday evening.

The biggest factors in May's deficit are change orders and the Authority having to purchase another year of Builder's Risk Insurance, according to Finance Committee Chair Laura Douglas.

The added insurance was necessary because the construction phase of the project was extended by four and a half months, she explained.

Originally scheduled to be completed by November 2008, the Hotel & Convention Center is now not expected to open until March 2009 due to unforeseen construction issues, including the encountering of rock and water while digging at the site.

Chairman of the Board Art Morris said that the Authority is "absolutely relying on" assurances from State Senator Gib Armstrong of $3.2 million in state grants for the project once the State Senate passes its 2008-2009 budget.

Morris said he has been assured by the Senator that the budget will be acted on "very soon."

Asked whether a portion of state grants are budgeted for Penn Square Partners, Morris responded that he understands that Senator Armstrong is working with Penn Square Partners separately.