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New Sports Complex Proposed for Carl Junction - FOX 14 TV Joplin and Pittsburg News Weather Sports |

New Sports Complex Proposed for Carl Junction

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CARL JUNCTION, MISSOURI -

A possible new sports complex may come to Carl Junction if voters give approval.  The City has unveiled the multi-million dollar proposal that includes moving baseball, softball, and tee-ball fields away from flood zones.

But city officials say this proposal could be tough for voters to approve.

Get rid of baseballs at CJ's current sports complex, an the Bulldog Youth Athletic Association says you still get a lot of fouls.

"Debris," says Tera Miller with the Bulldog Youth Athletic Association.

The Frank Dean Sports Complex floods nearly every year, leaving debris from Center Creek.

"Bottles and cans and pallets and shoes and clothing," says Miller.

Regardless...

"Late March, all the way through October, there is something going on down there," says Carl Junction City Administrator Steve Lawver.

But all the ball play comes after a lot of volunteer with and tax dollars paying to clear sewer lines at the sports complex that were clogged by flood waters.

Now there's a different prospect.

"It's a huge step for Carl Junction to be able to consider something like this," says Lawver.

The City is looking at working with the EPA to level 40 acres of land (the City already owns this land), in order to build five new baseball and softball fields and one new tee-ball field.  According to City officials, the land, towards unincorporated Stringtown, would not be prone to flooding.

"All of our community would be able to utilize this," says Miller.  "My hope is we would be able to host tournaments and bring in some of the surrounding cities that we can't accommodate for, right now."

"You're going to have people who need to go somewhere to eat, need some place to get gasoline," says Lawver.

Preliminary details right now point to a $4.8 million project price, and increased property taxes only within Carl Junction city limits to pay for the project cost.  Property tax would increase on a $100,000 home by $57.  

"People are very conscious about how they are spending their money," says Lawver.

Nonetheless, the Bulldog Youth Athletic Association hopes voters think about the future.

"I really just want our community to know, or to show, that our kids are really worth investing in," says Miller.

Lawver will next meet with a bond counselor to discuss plans to put the proposal on the ballot.

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