In a vote, Prince William County supervisors rejected a motion to place a proposed Potomac Nationals (High A; Carolina League) ballpark plan on the November ballot.
Tuesday’s meeting included a vote in which of the Board of Supervisors would decide whether to accept or reject a motion to place the measure on the November 7 ballot. The end result was a 4-4 vote, effectively meaning that the referendum was rejected by the supervisors.
Leading up to the vote, P-Nats owner Art Silber had stated that he wanted to avoid the delay forced by the referendum and finalize an agreement by July. As proposed, the ballpark plan calls for the county to issue Industrial Development Authority bonds for the $35 million ballpark, with the team paying about $2.7 million in debt service annually for 30 years.
With the decision to reject the referendum, county officials can move forward with negotiations relating to the plan. However, with a bond validation lawsuit is required for the process to move forward, supervisors who voted against the proposed referendum still noted that the process is going to take time. More from Potomac Local:
“I’m voting no because it represents a 16-week delay in the negotiations with the county, the team, and JBG,” said Woodbridge District Supervisor Frank Principi. “This is an opportunity that defines our community, and I want to be on the right side of investing in our community and being an economic shot in the arm for the community.”
Coles District Supervisor Marty Nohe, the swing vote on the board Tuesday, voted to kill a referendum.
“I love baseball…I’m not voting for the referendum, but I”m not convinced we’ll have a deal in four weeks,” said Nohe.
July marks a self-imposed deadline by the team to notify Minor Leauge Baseball of the intent to move the team to a new home. The league has long chastised the conditions of the team’s current home at Richard G. Pfitzner Stadium for not being up to league standards.
Principi and Nohe were joined by supervisor John Jenkins and chairman at-large Corey Stewart in voting against putting the proposal up for a referendum, while supervisors Pete Candland, Ruth Anderson, Maureen Caddigan, and Jeanine Lawson were in favor of the ballot question.
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