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PawSox Bringing Ballpark Pitch to R.I. House Speaker’s District

Pawsox Ballpark at Slater Mill rendering

As they continue their pursuit of a new Pawtucket ballpark, the Pawtucket Red Sox (Class AAA; International League) will make their case in the district of Rhode Island House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello

Currently, the PawSox are lobbying for the approval of a new ballpark in downtown Pawtucket. The financial framework for the project calls for the Pawtucket Redevelopment Agency to borrow a maximum of $85 million, with the PawSox making a $41 million contribution, the state paying $26 million, and the city allocating $18 million.

Earlier this month, the legislation was approved by the Rhode Island Senate, but questions have arisen about its status in the House of Representatives. Mattiello has expressed some doubts about the financial aspect of the plan, and has claimed that many of his constituents are opposed to the proposal. While the debate continues, the PawSox have scheduled a public event about the ballpark for Tuesday evening in Cranston, which is part of Mattiello’s district. More from The Providence Journal:

Asked over the weekend about the “Cranston Community Night” the PawSox are hosting in his district, he said: “I appreciate that the PawSox are coming into my district to listen to the people and address the concerns I am hearing from my constituents. I encourage the team to have meaningful communication with all Rhode Islanders and have meetings in different regions throughout the state.”

Asked why the team owners targeted Mattiello’s district, spokesman Guy Dufault said: “The speaker asked us to educate his district so we did a mailer and a flyer drop″ that had phone numbers to call for more information. About 48 people responded. They were invited to Tuesday’s meeting at the Grange, along with about 150 Cranston PawSox season-ticket holders, he said.

The PawSox have proposed the new ballpark as a replacement for McCoy Stadium, which is currently the the oldest active facility in Triple-A baseball.

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