Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Council to address use of Cleves fields

By Angela T. Koenig
Enquirer contributor

CLEVES - Officials will take a swing tonight at working out a dispute over use of the village's ball fields.

"I think we're going to work through this," Councilwoman Pat Green said of a recent rift over play and practice times at the village's Harmony Park and Cleves Community Park. She's on the Parks Committee, which meets tonight.

Tempers ran high at the last village council meeting, where representatives of the Three Rivers Athletic Association, local parents and coaches packed the municipal building to express opposition to the 2003 ball field schedules. The new schedule allows teams from outside the Three Rivers community field times once held exclusively by the association.

Association President Tom Lakamp said the opposition came out of a prior agreement with village officials that new teams would not cause play and practice time conflicts.

"Teams are looking for fields, and I understand that, but not at our kids' expense," said Lakamp.

As it stands, Three Rivers has about 70 percent of the time slots. About 30 percent of the association's players reside in the village, which owns and maintains the parks.

Under discussion this evening will be a field time fee structure - use of the fields was free - and an annual parking fee for participants.

The parks meeting takes place at 6:30 p.m., 101 North Miami Ave.

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