January 16, 2018
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Group seeking artificial turf athletic field in Bath nears fundraising goal

By Alex Lear, The Forecaster

BATH, Maine — An artificial turf field planned for several years could become a reality this summer at the Edward J. McMann Outdoor Athletic Complex.

Fields for Our Future, the group raising money to install the surface, has about $50,000 left before it reaches its $580,000 goal. Kay Beveridge, chairwoman of the group with Lu Lozano, last week said the organization has received almost $100,000 in new donations in the past three months.

“The Fields For Our Future committee would like to thank everyone for their generosity and support,” Beveridge said in an email. “We are almost at the finish line!”

The City Council is expected to discuss the field Wednesday, April 3. One topic the panel may consider is formation of a building committee for the project. The meeting will be held at 6 p.m. at City Hall.

Proponents of the turf field have said its durability and ability to be used more frequently will create greater opportunities for events and revenue.

The City Council and residents debated turf field funding in 2010. Fields for Our Future raised $270,000 for the project before the group approached the council about borrowing the remaining funds.

The council voted 5-4 in February 2010 to borrow up to $300,000 for the project, but a successful petition drive sent the matter to a referendum, where voters defeated the borrowing proposal in June 2010.

The City Council then voted 5-1 in September 2010 to support the turf installation, as long as there was no request for or appropriation of taxpayer funds.

“The reason we’ve raised half a million dollars is because people feel that this is not just a donation, but an investment,” Beveridge said last week.

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