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County leaders prep for Rye Playland openingPosted: Updated:
Westchester County leaders are making a major push to show they are firmly in the driver's seat as opening day at Rye Playland nears.
Park workers are busy sprucing up the area for the expected crowds, and County Executive George Latimer was busy trying to write a new narrative for the future of the troubled park, which includes more investment, better marketing and even a new ride.
Opening day could be shrouded in controversy because county officials are engaged in a public spat with management company Standard Amusements. Standard Amusements was supposed to take over running Rye Playland later this year.
MORE: Latimer: Playland project terminated due to breach of contract , Westchester ends contract with company that manages Playland ,Not playing fair? Latimer slams Standard Amusements on Playland management
Last week, the county abruptly canceled a 30-year $30 million deal with the company. The deal would have seen Standard Amusements overseeing the park in exchange for money to fix it up.
The controversial deal was negotiated by former County Executive Rob Astorino and approved by the Board of Legislators.
Standard Amusements has threatened legal action, and implied that the park isn't safe. Latimer says the park is safe, has been safe and will be safe.
County officials have promised a tour soon so people can see for themselves if that's true. Playland advocates say they are willing to give the county the benefit of the doubt for now.
The park officially opens to the public for its 91st season this Saturday.