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Remember that $15M for a new Hagerstown ballpark? Um…

New Hagerstown ballpark

It was all excitement when an anonymous donor stepped forward to pledge $15 million toward a new Hagerstown Suns (Low Class A; Sally League) ballpark, but now city officials wonder whether the donor can fulfill the pledge.

Perhaps there’s been a little too much secrecy in Hagerstown City Hall about the gift, as the name of the donor has not been released. However, in city circles, the donor’s name is known — and it has raised some red flags on further reflection, according to Hagerstown City Councilman Lewis C. Metzner:

“If these folks are right — that they think the individual who’s promised to give the $15 million doesn’t have the money — well, then I guess we’re going to be looking at a different project with different funding sources, but it’s not going to involve $15 million in taxpayer money because that’s not going to happen,” Metzner said. “There’s got to be private financing….

“We have yet to see if this person … has the money or doesn’t. I can’t tell you and I’ve tried to make that as clear to people as I can do. If the person who is claiming to have the money doesn’t have it, you got to scratch your head and ask the questions why people do what they do, but I don’t know yet because I don’t know whether this individual has the money … (or) doesn’t have the money.”

If the $15 million donation falls through, it proabably won’t kill the ballpark project: before the donor stepped forward, city leaders had put together a funding plan that includes $10 million from the state, $6 million from the Suns in rent and the rest from the city and the county. The $15 million pledged by the donor would have replaced the city and country contribution to the ballpark.

RELATED STORIES: See for yourself: fans get peek at problems with Municipal StadiumAnonymous donor pledges $15M for new Hagerstown ballpark; Hagerstown: Construction of new ballpark could begin next springWinchester: We’re not optimistic about landing SunsHagerstown takes first step toward ballpark fundingHagerstown mayor: We’re close to long-term lease with Suns;Hagerstown: Let’s begin designing new downtown ballparkCounty to help fund new Hagerstown ballparkHagerstown citizens: Build downtown ballparkConsultant: Downtown Hagerstown ballpark is viable projectWinchester ballpark back on city agendaWork continues on Suns lease extensionWinchester rejects ballpark; Suns to discuss Municipal Stadium lease extensionWinchester seeks lease changes for proposed Suns ballparkHagerstown pitches downtown ballparkSuns: Nationals forcing us from HagerstownHagerstown Suns sign letter of intent for Winchester moveHagerstown looking at new ballpark to keep SunsWinchester preparing to offer $15 million ballpark to SunsHagerstown Suns in play


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