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February 13, 2013

Bond path set for pool, baseball park in New Albany

Duplication debate arises over separate Little League, administration plans

(Continued)

NEW ALBANY —

“I think we serve the community well, and there’s so much better we can do with our funds than have a duplicate service,” Endres said. 

The New Albany Little League’s coverage area incorporates the city and stretches out to County Line Road. City Councilman and redevelopment member Dan Coffey said that by building new fields in the county, New Albany Little League is hampering the chances of the organization being able to serve inner-city children. 

He responded to Endres that the city has had its own youth baseball league before, and that the commission, council and administration have an obligation to provide adequate facilities for New Albany residents. 

“This is about meeting the needs of children,” Coffey said. “Our responsibility is to the citizens of New Albany. Where you’re preparing to build this is not in New Albany.” 

Commission member Adam Dickey suggested the city and Little League meet to possible iron out a partnership. As a private organization, New Albany Little League can host its games where it chooses. 

The organization has garnered Floyd County as a partner for its potential project. The first phase of Little League’s proposal — estimated to cost $3.8 million — is to purchase the property from Northside Christian Church and construct six baseball fields. 

Softball fields would be added as part of the second phase. Endres said that when both phases are complete, families with children playing softball and baseball will be able to drive to one location instead of separate parks. 

Dickey stressed that in his belief, the commission must consider what is best for New Albany. 

“We’ve still got an obligation to look at our facilities,” he said. “I don’t think the two [separate parks plans] necessarily conflict.”

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