Faced with a GoFundMe deadline the next day under which local youth fundraising to build a downtown skateboard park would have to forfeit the $6,500 in donations already pledged, the New Paltz Village Board voted at its February 26 meeting to designate the campaign as an official Village project. This decision enables the New Paltz Community Foundation to accept the money and keep it in a dedicated fund while additional fundraising events add to the organizers’ nest egg. “They can’t hold money for an individual or a random group,” Village mayor Tim Rogers explained. “Are we committed to this project?”
The trustees agreed to take on the role of the project’s municipal sponsor, without committing any taxpayer support as yet. “We will take the money as long as we are provided with a paper trail of individual donor data, including contact information, dollar amounts and names and all other data collected by GoFundMe,” said Rogers, so that donations can be refunded in case the project organizers fail to reach their goal.
The mayor noted that he had a conference call scheduled the next day with a skate park designer with a track record of building hundreds of such parks, mostly in urban areas. The submission of cost estimates from such contractors would help organizers in creating a budget for the project. The youth group was scheduled to meet on the SUNY New Paltz campus on Monday evening, March 2; according to Village trustee Alexandria Wojcik, they had already found a volunteer grantwriter to assist them in their quest for funding.