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HomeNewsArchivesFEES TO BE 'RELAXED' AT BALLPARKS

FEES TO BE 'RELAXED' AT BALLPARKS

Housing Parks and Recreation Commissioner Ira Hobson has backed down on that plan to increase park usage fees to $3,200 from $600 for the season for local baseball and softball leagues.
Karl Callwood, executive director of the Susthens Vialet Softball League, told Radio One.
Sports over the weekend that "based on a meeting we had with Commissioner Hobson," fees will "stay the same as last year."
Hobson himself confirmed to the radio station Monday that "no fees will be changed for 1999."
As justification for the announced increases, the department had cited electricity and maintenance costs of $1,900 a month for the Emile Griffith Ballpark alone. League officials had countered that if the increases were implemented, they would have no choice but to cancel their seasons.
Sen. George Goodwin, chair of the Senate Housing, Parks and Recreation Committee, had voiced strong opposition to the huge fee hikes, terming "an increase of this magnitude . . . totally unfair and unacceptable."
At the beginning of September, Goodwin called on Hobson to rescind the increases "until they are approved by the governor." Further, the senator said, before it even considers increasing fees, the department "needs to address the deteriorated condition of the baseball fields on St. Thomas."
Hobson used the term "relax" on Monday to describe the action he subsequently decided to take, stating, "I have decided to relax the fees."
However, he added, his department will re-evaluate the fee structure for the year 2000.

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Housing Parks and Recreation Commissioner Ira Hobson has backed down on that plan to increase park usage fees to $3,200 from $600 for the season for local baseball and softball leagues.
Karl Callwood, executive director of the Susthens Vialet Softball League, told Radio One.
Sports over the weekend that "based on a meeting we had with Commissioner Hobson," fees will "stay the same as last year."
Hobson himself confirmed to the radio station Monday that "no fees will be changed for 1999."
As justification for the announced increases, the department had cited electricity and maintenance costs of $1,900 a month for the Emile Griffith Ballpark alone. League officials had countered that if the increases were implemented, they would have no choice but to cancel their seasons.
Sen. George Goodwin, chair of the Senate Housing, Parks and Recreation Committee, had voiced strong opposition to the huge fee hikes, terming "an increase of this magnitude . . . totally unfair and unacceptable."
At the beginning of September, Goodwin called on Hobson to rescind the increases "until they are approved by the governor." Further, the senator said, before it even considers increasing fees, the department "needs to address the deteriorated condition of the baseball fields on St. Thomas."
Hobson used the term "relax" on Monday to describe the action he subsequently decided to take, stating, "I have decided to relax the fees."
However, he added, his department will re-evaluate the fee structure for the year 2000.