FIRST ON 3: Ballpark petition has enough signatures, could go on November Ballot
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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- The New Hanover County Board of Elections says it has verified enough signatures on a petition against a tax-funded baseball stadium in Wilmington.

Elections Director Marvin McFayden said late this afternoon, his office verified 74 signatures today. That brings the total to 2,848.

The results are in. There are now enough signatures on the petition against a tax-funded ballpark to take the next step.

It will now go to Wilmington City Council, which must either adopt it or put it up for a public vote.

“I can't speak for council as a whole, but I don't think that anyone thought that they wouldn't come up with the number,” says City Councilman Neil Anderson.

Organizers submitted about 4,000 petition signatures to the board of elections last month, which was about 1,200 more than required. However, twice the board found there weren't enough verified signatures. Finally on Tuesday, the petition was complete.

“Our victory is in it going into a public vote, not the outcome of the vote,” said Ben McCoy, one of the petition organizers. “Our victory is in getting it on the ballot.”

“The jury is out for us until we know exactly what we're going to vote to adopt or to put on the ballot,” Anderson says.

McCoy guesses if left up to voters the ordinance would be a home run.

“It will be an eight to one vote in favor of our ordinance is my prediction,” he says.

Anderson says if they decide to put the ordinance to public vote, the city could possibly put a bond referendum on the ballot that would be an alternative to voters.

WWAY tried contacting Mayor Bill Saffo, but were not able to reach him for comment. Councilman Kevin O’Grady says he believes council will put the ordinance to a public vote and was confident citizens will vote against it because of its ambiguous language.

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Good point,I would rather invest into a bad baseball team than inferior education standards,we do not have enough $$$$$$ in the treasury to make up for our educational shortfalls,another great reason to invest in commerce.
We have so many more educated people today,and higher un-employment.
Maybe all the inteligence,genious can tell us why?

little to no money was invested in your education.....

Yea let's just give up on education in favor of baseball. What is wrong with you? Let's give up on the total infrastructure so we can go watch a damn baseball game. Please keep posting you are the best thing going for the taxpayers against this.

Thanks!!

If you can't see the difference between essential and non-essential services.......... besides consider how much higher your taxes would be if future generations weren't trained adequately to begin careers. We educate kids to become future tax-payers or future tax-burdens. It's a specious argument.

Baseball and the Stadium are a business bring jobs and sales tax revenues here,this is not a frill,it is a shear business opportunity fitting what we do well,travel and tourism.
So a vote for Stadium and Baseball is one to fuel our economy!

You have, probably, never had to experience your house being broken into or burning down. Therefore, using your logic, why should you pay for police, fire or EMS services? You pay for schools because everytime you go into a business you want the individuals you are doing business with to have some semblance of an education. You want those who build your house, roads and grocery stores to know how to read and understand mathmatics. Think of all you own (computer, cellphone, car, television, toilet, etc....). Uneducated people would not have been able to conceptualize, design and create those, precious, items of yours. Our, public, educational system sucks. It is one of the worst in the world. However, every once in awhile they get it right and, because of your tax dollars, someone leaves high school with the knowledge, and skills, to actually make a difference in your life.

Wilmington Observer

you really have no understanding of what is going on in society.

There are some things that tax money should go towards that will have value added. Baseball adds nothing when compared to education. Education you need... baseball not so much. Roads we need... baseball not so much. Clean water and a working sewer system we need... baseball not so much. You sensing a trend here cupcakes?

Wonder how many folks payed for YOU to go to school that had no children? See how that works?

Wow....

We need viable opportunities for our citizens and gainfull employment,now not later.
That is why,what other new businesses are we creating?
Who else is Ponying up 30 years?
No one,no 1 so Baseball and Stadium ignites our new "economies".

Your paying to educate other kids in Wilmington ensures those kids of the ability to write down your order correctly at the restaurants that are about the only industry in town hiring them.

Now has local meaning

Guess Saffo Stadium will have to wait! Thank you to all that signed!