No home-runs on ball club’s plan

It was not exactly a home run as the Harriston Mercurys’ fastball club made a few financial requests from Minto council’s finance committee.

The first was for a grant of an additional 25% of the liquor proceeds from the International Softball Congress qualifying tournament to be held this June.

The letter from Trevor Seip, treasurer of the Harriston Mercurys’ noted, “This club has supported local clubs whenever possible through dona­tions and attendance at functions.”

The group intended to use the funds to cover travel costs to the main ISC tournament, being held in Wisconsin.

However, while supporting the local Sports team, councillor Dave Turton pointed out the policy regarding donations of extra funds was to come into play when groups had clearly defined the funds would be used towards a specific capital project.

“In the past, we’ve turned down requests for the money to be used for operating costs.”

Mayor David Anderson agreed the 25% additional dona­tions are intended to be for specific projects.

Deputy-Mayor Judy Dirk­sen, who is chairman of the finance committee, said that is her understanding as well.

The request was defeated.

A subsequent re­quest for the town to donate the costs of the diamond use for the qualifying tournament was ap­proved.

Seip wrote, “We anticipate the money the club would save on the diamond rental would be better used to cover travel costs.”

Councillors on the finance committee had no problem with that request.

Councillor Rick Hembly said the qualifying tournament is a major event that will bring people to the community.

Anderson said that recreation director David Stonley considered the request was also towards operating costs, and, as such, was not in favour.

Turton contended the team well represented Minto outside the local boundaries.

With the group bringing an event into town, he believed council should support it.

With split vote – Turton and Hembly in favour and And­erson and councillor Barb Burrows opposed, Dirksen broke the tie, in favour of the dona­tion.

“I believe it is important to support them, and I am more comfortable with this rather than the 25% donation from liquor sales,” she said.