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New Keuka Maid owner is refurbishing

URBANA—The new owner of the Keuka Maid has until Jan. 31, 2013, to get the former tourist cruise boat inspected under a new agreement with the town of Urbana.
Jeremy Fields, owner of Fields Construction and Excavating Inc. from Canandaigua, purchased the Keuka Maid for $26,000 at auction Monday, Oct. 22. Fields bid on the boat as a whole, including all equipment onboard. The Keuka Maid was previously owned by Robert Pfuntner.
Urbana town Clerk Mary Farmer said the board agreed to let Tim Murphy keep the Keuka Maid at the town’s dock to get the hull inspected by Jan. 31. She added the town expects the inspection to happen in mid-January.
Fields Construction is now working on the boat and preparing for the inspection. As of Monday, Dec. 10, Bruce Fields, the owner’s father, said they have taken off the roof, put all items into storage, and have removed all insulation, electrical wiring, and railings.
Fields said he didn’t know what his son’s plans are, but explained the boat is being completely refurbished and should pass the inspection by the deadline. He added the insulation, electric wiring, and railings all need to be replaced. Overall, he said the boat needs to be lightened for the inspection. Fields explained the removal of the roof took a good eight tons off of the original 202 ton boat. He pointed out the boat now sits 16 inches higher out of the water than it did previously.
The new owner had to make an agreement with the town by an Oct. 29 deadline. The town of Urbana will allow Fields Construction to pull the boat out of the water across Champlain Beach into the parking lot with a $2 million liability policy in place. They also needed to enter into a performance contract with the town stating the amount of time they would need to remove all equipment, dismantle the Keuka Maid itself and restore the property to its original condition, as well as including penalties for not completing the work by an agreed upon time.
The boat itself is 107 feet long, 202 tons and includes three pontoons, Cummins diesel engines, generators and hundreds of lifejackets. Also included is the ship’s restaurant equipment, which has a steamer, electric oven range, wooden bars, beer coolers, draft system, a 600 pound ice machine, water heaters and an assortment of tables, chairs and bar stools.