ONLY ON 3: Ballpark backers commission phone poll


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — There is a new poll in the field asking Wilmington voters how they feel about the proposed ballpark. Today, a member of our staff got a phone call poll asking what he thinks about the ballpark.

Raleigh-based Public Policy Polling is conducting the survey commissioned by supporters of of the proposed ballpark, including the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce, which is trying to find out what voters think about a plan for a ballpark in the Port City.

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An automated phone survey conducted by PPP asks several questions, most focusing on the ballpark and what it would be used for.

The poll starts by asking if the caller will vote for Barack Obama or Mitt Romney for president this fall. Then questions about baseball step to the plate.

Callers are asked if they support a bond referendum on the November ballot to pay for the stadium, and later if the $37 million price tag and multiple uses for the facility would affect how they feel about the referendum. They are also asked if they think there is enough affordable family entertainment in Wilmington.

Capstrat, the PR firm hired to represent the ballpark and its supporters, says the the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce is responsible for the poll. We tried to contact the Chamber by phone. The Chamber responded with an e-mail reading, “The campaign in support of the November bond referendum is coming together. And we are certainly conducting initial research. We do not, at this time, have polling numbers or information to release.”

City leaders told us they did not know about the poll. Capstrat says no public money is being used to conduct it.

Until now, the only scientific polls on the ballpark conducted were two by WWAY, The Big Talker FM and the Civitas Institute. Those polls showed most Wilmington voters like the idea of a ballpark in the city, but are strongly opposed to using tax money to pay for it.