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 General Discussion
 this could be more fields for cobb county
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high-n-tight

2 Posts

Posted - 07/20/2010 :  14:37:48  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
http://www.mdjonline.com/view/full_story/7867200/article-Marietta-approves--budget-without-tax-hikes-or-reserves


Reading this link I guess the 643 group is getting the park off aviation drive. This should give more places to play. I assume everybody thinks this is great news for youth baseball in marietta.

BravesFan

533 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  09:27:28  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yup, been discussed at great length a few months ago with opinions going both ways. If anyone has seen these fields then they know that the condition is not very good. Problem is, if 643 takes over it becomes private even though it's owned by the city. I can see both side of the argument, no easy answer.
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TAZ980002

825 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  09:50:43  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Are the fields serving a good purpose right now?
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Alter-Ego

802 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  10:58:59  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Is this any different than the Cherokee Reds having sole use of the main field at Barnett Park in Canton? They lock the fences and batting cages, even though my tax dollars go to support this park. You can get on the two lower fields because the softball organization uses them too, but even the lower cages are kept locked.

I am not saying the Reds should not have this, because that organization has made the arrangement and does a lot of work to keep the park nice. I don't blame them for locking things up and keeping people from messing it up. If I really wanted to play there, I could have my son play for one of the teams out of there (could have when he was younger, anyway. He is too old now.)

The problem is, there are not enough tax dollars to put to keeping these parks nice without some agreement like this. Unfortunately, many would rather see the parks stay in terrible shape, but completely open, than to be nice but limited to who can use it.
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Peanutsr

168 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  11:57:07  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The difference is that the Cherokee Reds are a non-profit youth org.
The original plan was for 643 to do a substantial amount of improvements ( which they would have to do anywhere, wether they purchased some property or leased ) and then they would recieve a twenty year rent free lease. Make no mistake, Pralgo and the officers of 643 will be making a killing off the backs of the taxpayers.
This also begs another question. If the deal is the same as was originally proposed, 643 would be leaseing public property rent free. Would the city of Marietta still be responsible for a certain amount of upkeep since it would still be a "public" park?
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in_the_know

785 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  12:12:26  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The current use of the fields is for homeless people sleeping in the dugouts (this is not a joke, stroll out there in the evening and you'll find this to be true). The park hasn't been used in years. The last use I'm aware of them was for beer league softball games in the early '90's. No one had stepped forward until now with any desire to use them, so they have the potential to go from dormancy to being cleaned up and played on. It's not as if they were being used by rec leagues and are now being privatized.
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TAZ980002

825 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  13:08:25  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by in_the_know

The current use of the fields is for homeless people sleeping in the dugouts (this is not a joke, stroll out there in the evening and you'll find this to be true). The park hasn't been used in years. The last use I'm aware of them was for beer league softball games in the early '90's. No one had stepped forward until now with any desire to use them, so they have the potential to go from dormancy to being cleaned up and played on. It's not as if they were being used by rec leagues and are now being privatized.



If this is true, then it sounds like an improvement to the property to me. Yes, 643 will benefit from the arrangement but so will many kids and families that are part of the 643 organization. And, instead of the property continuing to deteriorate, 643 will improve it and maintain it without money from the taxpayers.
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JCB

62 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  14:35:12  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
There are no free lunches and I am sure that 643 will pay a use fee either directly or through continued and defined maintenance. As some have commented, these fields apparently have not been used (other than possibly for homeless shelter) and any use should be seen as a benefit. You cannot blame a person or orgainization from pursuing a negoiation that will yield in benefits for all parties that ultimately get to use the improved fields. Remember some of 643's games will involve opponents from the public sector, out of town teams, etc. and all of these uses will generate financial goodwill for the area. If 643 improves its operations and gets more kids playing ball as a result of their entrepeneuiral effots - good for them and everyone else. Apparently these fields have gone un-used and we all could have pursued making them useful, but we chose not to - no blame should be passed or asserted because they did!
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Peanutsr

168 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  22:23:38  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I don't blame 643 at all. If Danny can pull it off then he is a better businessman then he is a baseball coach.
I fault the politicians. They are setting a dangerous precedent that could open the door to corruption on a grand scale.
If the property is in disrepair and the city does not have available funds to maintain it then they should sell it. It wouldn't bother me if they sold it to 643 for less than market value. The revenue generated could be used for improvements at other parks, There would also be a steady stream of taxes collected yearly that would benefit the city, county, and state.
That being said, it is dead wrong for any municipality to buy land with taxpayer dollars then parcel that land out to a private for profit enterprise, rent free(excluding the initial improvements negotiated by 643), with the ability to exclude the public from use.

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BREAMKING

244 Posts

Posted - 07/21/2010 :  23:22:25  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Does any of the current players even live in the city of marietta. I just do not see how it will benefit the average city of Marietta tax payers, but I guess since nobody is using it. It will not hurt them either. This organization must have some close ties to people in high places to pull this deal off. I live in the county and could care less. I read where old custer park will be soccer in the future so not really seeing how they are adding parks if they are taking one away. Sad that baseball died in this area years ago. Perry Parham used to have tough teams back in the early travel ball days. Why does somebody not go after bells ferry park total waste of tax payers dollars. Sandy Plains softball hardly ever uses it.
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highcheese99

14 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2010 :  07:56:38  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I think they should build soccer fields like they are doing at old Custer Park.
Soccer is more popular in that area and the people around there could use the fields like most parks in Cobb County, but during soccer season, the soccer association has priority over everyone else. This way the citizens are not locked out from using them like at East Cobb.
I am sure many hitting places and baseball academies would love a shot at this deal. Problem is only certain people are privy to the information and what is going on here.
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TAZ980002

825 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2010 :  09:30:21  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Corruption in our government ??? Tell me no !!!
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Zcoach

147 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2010 :  09:54:31  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Shaw Park has been after Cobb County to use Bells Ferry for the last 5 years to accommodate rising baseball enrollment. They even went to the City of Marietta and offered to help fix up (and use) Custer Park. They are still waiting for a reply.
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touchemall

145 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2010 :  10:04:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

"The baseball company was the top responder to a Request for Proposals the city issued last fall, Bruton said". Taken from the article in the MDJ.

I don't think there were any secrets. The place is an eye sore - glad someone wants to step up and do something about it.


Read more: The Marietta Daily Journal - Marietta approves budget without tax hikes or reserves
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Alter-Ego

802 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2010 :  10:14:59  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
And we wonder why East Cobb is a private facility.
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bkball

138 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2010 :  10:23:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I wonder if East Cobb would be interested in the property? I bet some would object to that.
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Critical Mass

179 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2010 :  11:58:56  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hire an attorney and let them manage the contact and drive the effort at the government level, it's called lobbying. Good for 6-4-3, that park needs the upgrade although security could potentially be an issue since tons of low income housing exists in the area along with DFACS and pedestrian traffic due to the bus terminal for Cobb County. The upside would be getting your windshield cleaned as you enter/exit the park from a game.
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caughtstealing

16 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  08:33:34  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
How is 643'a deal any different than Harrison Par/Sand Plains Baseball? Isn't that a public park funded by tax payers (Cobb County) and leased by SPBA?
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stinger

120 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  08:39:50  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
More history on the topic . . .

http://www.mdjonline.com/view/full_story/7065476/article-Group-makes-new-offer-for-baseball-park-in-Marietta?

Goldstein said it makes no sense for the city to spend $800,000 on upgrading the site only to turn it over to a private firm that would only pay the city between $12,000 and $20,000 a year.

"It's a sweetheart deal for the private firm," Goldstein said.
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Peanutsr

168 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  09:05:37  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Once again, Sandy Plains baseball is a non-profit youth organization. They have an elected board that makes decisions as to coaches, tournaments, etc. When no games or practices are taking place the public can use the fields.
643 is a privately owned for profit entity. No different than your local mega-store. (unless that store is a publicly traded company, in which case it is owned by the stockholders)They will have the ability to block access to the fields up to and including having any taxpaying citizen arrested for tresspassing on "public" property. Two very different situations.
quote:
Originally posted by caughtstealing

How is 643'a deal any different than Harrison Par/Sand Plains Baseball? Isn't that a public park funded by tax payers (Cobb County) and leased by SPBA?

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highcheese99

14 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  10:18:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
common sense tells me how its different. I was at Sandy Plains this morning throwing BP to my son and a neighbor, I would not be able to go up there to a 643 owned field and do that. Ironic I have seen 643 instructors using Sandy Plains for lessons since its inception.
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TAZ980002

825 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  11:32:54  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My guess is that if you called Danny and asked him to use one of the fields to throw to your son, he would be happy to help as long as he didn't have anything scheduled for that field.

I don't get all the hate towards 643. Their organization is good for youth baseball in my opinion. Danny and his staff are helping hundreds of kids learn and love the game. At the same time, they are able to make some money doing something they love to do.
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Peanutsr

168 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  13:09:33  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I am not sure how you miconstrue concern over missuse of public property as hate towards 643.
The questions and concerns here have nothing to do with baseball. They have everything to do with allowing a private enterprise to make a killing off of Public property at the exclusion of the public.
Separate your emotions and baseball from the equation. Tommorrow you open up your local newspaper and there is a story about XYZ company that is negotiating with your local city council to take over a public park in your town. This company is going to teach widget making. They would be paying a nominal fee for the use of the property. They would also be making an extrordinary amount of profit. By the way XYZ company would also be allowed to deny access to this property to the public. Would you be OK with that? If concerned citizens were angry, would you wonder why there was so much hate towards XYZ company?
I admire what Danny has done with 643. His skills as a coach are extrordinary, his ability to get the best out of his players is second to none. I don't know him personally but from what I have heard, he is a very nice individual who genuinely cares for the kids he coaches. He is also a businessman and as CEO of his own company I would guess that he is pretty good at that too. I am sure that if he were to purchase and develop a piece of property and open up 643 Baseball Academy that he would be hugely successful.
If that is his dream then best of luck and more power to him.
Just don't take advantage of a missinformed City Council and a recession to line your pockets at the publics expense.
quote:
Originally posted by Bandit_Hawk

My guess is that if you called Danny and asked him to use one of the fields to throw to your son, he would be happy to help as long as he didn't have anything scheduled for that field.

I don't get all the hate towards 643. Their organization is good for youth baseball in my opinion. Danny and his staff are helping hundreds of kids learn and love the game. At the same time, they are able to make some money doing something they love to do.

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Critical Mass

179 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  14:46:21  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Peanut, up until this point, nobody has given .02 about this park or faclity for 15 years...except the homeless. Goldstein is attemting to pacify his base to stay in office..by the way, his base doesn't use the facilities either.
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bballman

997 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  14:57:31  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
1st thing I would do is check and see whether or not 643 is a non-profit corporation. I don't know. I'm pretty sure ECB is a non-profit. That does not mean that a non-profit cannot have employees who make a salary off of the enterprise. I don't know that 643 is out to make a "killing".

Peanutsr, if in fact 643 is a non-profit, apply this scenario. A city owns an abandoned building. A non-profit organization that distributes food or clothes to the hungry contracts with the city to take over the building and renovate it. The employees of the company make a pretty decent salary operating the business. Of course, they close and lock the doors when they are not there. Is this really any different?

FYI, I have no affiliation with 643 and have never met Danny Pralgo.
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TAZ980002

825 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2010 :  15:21:25  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Peanutsr

I am not sure how you miconstrue concern over missuse of public property as hate towards 643.
The questions and concerns here have nothing to do with baseball. They have everything to do with allowing a private enterprise to make a killing off of Public property at the exclusion of the public.
Separate your emotions and baseball from the equation. Tommorrow you open up your local newspaper and there is a story about XYZ company that is negotiating with your local city council to take over a public park in your town. This company is going to teach widget making. They would be paying a nominal fee for the use of the property. They would also be making an extrordinary amount of profit. By the way XYZ company would also be allowed to deny access to this property to the public. Would you be OK with that? If concerned citizens were angry, would you wonder why there was so much hate towards XYZ company?
I admire what Danny has done with 643. His skills as a coach are extrordinary, his ability to get the best out of his players is second to none. I don't know him personally but from what I have heard, he is a very nice individual who genuinely cares for the kids he coaches. He is also a businessman and as CEO of his own company I would guess that he is pretty good at that too. I am sure that if he were to purchase and develop a piece of property and open up 643 Baseball Academy that he would be hugely successful.
If that is his dream then best of luck and more power to him.
Just don't take advantage of a missinformed City Council and a recession to line your pockets at the publics expense.
quote:
Originally posted by Bandit_Hawk

My guess is that if you called Danny and asked him to use one of the fields to throw to your son, he would be happy to help as long as he didn't have anything scheduled for that field.

I don't get all the hate towards 643. Their organization is good for youth baseball in my opinion. Danny and his staff are helping hundreds of kids learn and love the game. At the same time, they are able to make some money doing something they love to do.





Peanutsr, I really could't be less emotional about this. I don't live in Cobb, I just read the postings of this forum and I have 2 sons that play travel baseball. I don't think I've misconstrued the hate that is being vocalized on this forum from time to time regarding 643. To me, and others that I've talked to, it's very evident in the some of the postings on this board.

I understand and appreciate others' point of view and their objection to this arrangement. Bottom line, Danny and his staff have met with and convinced the city council that they can improve and utilize this piece of property. So far, everyone else has been content to let it sit it disrepair and then complain when someone else does something about it. This is a lot like complaining about our elected officials after you have chosen NOT to cast a vote in the elections.

Just my 2 cents.
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