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Bellmead Continues Ballpark Talks

Waco BlueCats

Officials in Bellmead, TX continue to map out the details of a new ballpark that has been proposed for the Waco BlueCats (independent; Southwest League). 

The BlueCats are set to launch next year as charter members of the Southwest League, a venture from Mark Schuster and the Ventura Sports Group that is expected to include six teams. If everything moves forward as proposed, the BlueCats would play at a new ballpark in Bellmead that opens next spring.

Officials took a step toward contributing funds to the $11 million project earlier this week, when the city council authorized its first of two readings for the  proposal. As it stands, $4 million would come from the city, which would use some economic development funds in its contribution,  according to Bellmead city manager Bo Thomas. More from the Waco Tribune-Herald:

The economic development sales tax revenue the city would use on the stadium is managed and spent separately from the city’s general fund.

“Even if it weren’t this project, let’s just assume this project wasn’t even on the table, these funds aren’t coming to the general fund anyway,” Thomas said.

The city has $4 million in its economic development reserves, but leaders are considering using $2 million of that and borrowing another $2 million to cover their $4 million contribution.

Economic development sales tax revenue would be able to pay back the borrowed $2 million over 20 years, Thomas said. The debt would cost the city $160,000 to $180,000 a year in interest, he said.

The second reading could be conducted next month.

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