• 77°

School board OKs changes for field use

A local minor-league football team will be allowed an exception to the Brookhaven School District’s rental policy for the high school football field pending final approval by the district athletic director, the district board of trustees decided in a called meeting held Thursday.

     The Tri-County Heroes will hold its first game Saturday, June 2, prompting the need for a called meeting to deal quickly with the matter, said Superintendent Dr. Lisa Karmacharya.

     Athletic Director Tommy Clopton appeared before board members at their regularly scheduled Tuesday night meeting and informed them that Phil Campbell, coach of the Heroes, had requested exceptions to the original rental agreement.

     Per board policy, only use of the field and public restrooms is allowed. Use of the concession stands, press box, scoreboard, time clocks and public address system is prohibited.

     The Heroes originally wanted access to some or all of these facilities, even after team representatives signed the original rental agreement, Clopton said Tuesday night. Clopton indicated he was willing to allow use of the scoreboard but no other facilities. Board members then granted him the authority to draft an addendum to the board’s rental policy.

     That addendum was presented to board members Thursday.

     According to the addendum, the Heroes will be permitted to use the scoreboard and the area of the press box from which the scoreboard is operated. They will not be allowed use of the play clocks or public address system.

     The Heroes must provide and compensate a certified football official to operate the scoreboard. A certified employee of the Brookhaven School District must be present while the Heroes use the field. This employee will be paid at a rate of $35 per hour by the Heroes.

     A minimum of five security officers must be present at the field during all games and a detailed security plan must be presented five days before the first game.

     Other restrictions include a ban on food and drinks except drinks used by players and a requirement that the track around the field be partially covered.

     Board members continued to express reservations.

     “I have some mixed emotions about this,” said Dan Brown, indicating a preference for denying the request.

     Ultimately, board members unanimously granted Clopton the authority to approach the Heroes with the updated rental contract.

     In other business, the board voted to move the date of its next board meeting from June 26 to June 19 pending the presence of a quorum. Karmacharya will be unavailable June 26.