Ballpark meeting leaves many questions

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Submitted: Wed, 05/09/2012 - 2:03am
Updated: Wed, 05/09/2012 - 4:33pm

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY)– Despite it being election night, Wilmington City Hall was full for a public meeting about bringing baseball to the Port City. With questions swirling over stadium sites and funding, not all people are singing take me out to the ball game.

“Most of the people would be tickled to death to have a stadium here as long as its privately enterprised,” said RJ Davis, a Wilmington resident.

National Sports Services, who is doing the consulting for the City of Wilmington when it comes to this project, gave the public general information about baseball stadiums.

Many residents gave the service a piece of their mind as well. It all came back to one main issue: how will the city pay for a stadium? Although the city does not have that answer yet, some people on hand were in favor of the ballpark even if it is taxpayer funded.

“I can’t imagine that it will have an extreme impact on the individual taxpayer as some of the people have been reporting,” said Matthew Onley, another Wilmington resident. “I feel like the benefits would outweigh the cost.”

National Sports Services says it is noticing a trend when it comes to funding for similar projects.

“The norm now, we’re seeing, is a public private type of venture to where both parties are participating in the process to try and make it happen,” said Matt Perry of the National Sports Service.

The next step for the city is on May 15, when Mandalay Baseball is expected to deliver a proposal for the staff to review.

The city will also hold another public meeting tomorrow night to accommodate those who were unable to make it tonight.


  • GuestEvan says:

    Obviously, no one from the private sector consider this as profitable venture, otherwise it would have been already built by private investors.

    Elected official should govern, not to use their time and tax payers money for a business ventures. If officials are successful businessmen, why they are in politics?

  • ChefnSurf says:

    - Statement: “”The norm now, we’re seeing, is a public private type of venture to where both parties are participating in the process to try and make it happen,” said Matt Perry of the National Sports Service.”
    – Translation: Hey, we don’t want to pay for this any more than you do.

    If this thing is going to be so profitable, why would a for-profit business want local taxpayers to be obligated for its debt?

  • Brian says:

    I do not want my tax dollars wasted on a(nother) baseball stadium. Bring the team here, and if they sell out Legion stadium 3 years in a row for every game, then let’s talk.

  • frontpaige says:

    I keep hearing public/private funding for the stadium project.
    In similar ventures across the country, this means the taxpayer pays the majority share and is responsible for the debt. The use of private funds can be more a taxpayer involvement ‘lure’ that leaves the taxpayer on the hook.

  • cintrek62 says:

    I own property & I don’t want to see my tax dollars go up even a few dollars for baseball. My sewer bill is continuously going up, up, up. I don’t like baseball, such a boring game, doubt I would ever go to a game, so no I don’t want to pay for it. Let the private business people pay for it. Quit raising property taxes for these types of ventures. If you want the money to build a stadium pay for it from your own pocket. I know how to budget so give me a call & I’ll show you where you can cut costs to build your stadium. My income isn’t going up at all but my bills sure are so all extras have been cut. Can you say the same?

  • Wilmington Observer says:

    I do not want my (tax) dollars to be used for baseball.

    Wilmington Observer

  • Guest2020 says:

    Wilmingtons roads are crappy. They have been laying off city workers for years and the remaining workers have to take on more responsibility with no increase in pay. How do these politicians think they can afford more financial liability? These politicians are in the pockets of those who stand to gain the most from these ventures. Who benefited from the convention center? Who stands to benefit from the building of this stadium? It sure isn’t the taxpayers.

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