Grafius Run, Bowman Field work both deserve attention
Williamsport Mayor Gabriel J. Campana wants to find funds in the city’s budget to solve flooding problems at Grafius Run rather than spending it painting bare wood grandstands at Bowman Field.
City Council President Bill Hall thinks the bare wood, beams and grandstand ceilings, much of it exposed due to recent roof repairs at Susquehanna Bank Park at Bowman Field, must be painted now to avoid wasting the money recently spent on repairs.
The price tag on the painting is $68,000, which Hall believes is readily available through codes department salary and benefits savings in the first six months of the year, savings through a health care consortium the city has joined and additional natural gas impact fee money.
The mayor is adamant he won’t sign a painting contract for Bowman Field.
Both men believe short-term emergency flood mitigation work should be addressed.
From where we sit, we don’t understand why both short-term fixes for Grafius Run and the painting at Bowman Field can’t be addressed unless personal agendas are getting in the way.
The city has a responsibility to curtail the flooding problems at Grafius Run, an ongoing problem that affects residents.
But the long-term solution costs million of dollars.
City Council has agreed to make it a major capital project in the future.
And the city also has a responsibility to make Bowman Field an attractive, user-friendly facility for those who attend events there, including Williamsport Crosscutter games.
The city has sold naming rights to Bowman Field to a local bank. It has an obligation to that sponsor to keep the facility is good condition. Barewood grandstands do not qualify as good condition.
Also, given the standards for minor league baseball facilities, neglect of the grandstands could jeopardize the city’s future qualifications to be a minor league baseball facility.
Let’s get both Grafius Run short-term repair and the Bowman Field grandstand painting addressed.