Baseball agreement meets with approval in Euharlee
by Jessica Loeding
Sep 08, 2010 | 2246 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dominating more than an hour of conversation Tuesday, an agreement between The Baseball Group Inc. and the city was passed unanimously.

The meeting, which entered executive session after two and a half hours, was spent mostly discussing the proposal by TBG to make improvements to Osborne Park in exchange for usage of the fields, including water and electricity.

Planning and Zoning Administrator Ron Goss Jr. said that some confusion had followed a work session last month in which the idea was proposed.

"I don't think anyone has an issue with those fields being fixed up," he said, adding the main concern he had heard centered around scheduling.

Under the agreement, which runs through the end of 2011, the city will maintain control of scheduling. TBG will make improvements that include mowing, painting, pressure washing, providing tarps, rebuilding infields, building a bullpen for the larger field, installing new foul poles and so on.

Woodland Middle School, whose softball and baseball teams use those fields, will maintain top priority in scheduling. Representatives of the school, including Principal Lamar Barnes and several coaches, expressed hesitation about planning practices, games and rescheduled play.

Councilman Joseph "Jo Jo" Turner also voiced concerns about what he felt was a lack of definition in the wording of the contract, including detailing what would happen should TBG commit a "breach" of contract.

Goss said it may be to the city's benefit to provide a warning before terminating the deal as to avoid the city reimbursing TBG for improvements made prior to the termination.

He also stressed that he felt the agreement was "in the best interest of the city."

Willie Burge, who spoke on behalf of TBG, said the organization was interested in providing boys in the area exposure to quality baseball.

"You'll like this, I promise," Burge said.

Following the debate, the council voted to approve the agreement.

See Thursday's issue of The Daily Tribune News for further coverage of Tuesday's meeting.