City drops Tracy Futbol Club club from Legacy Fields
by Bob Brownne
Aug 21, 2014 | 2891 views | 0 0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print

One of four local sports groups that signed up to be part of the first phase of Legacy Fields is now out of the city’s sports park project.

The Tracy City Council voted unanimously at its regular meeting Tuesday to end the city’s contract with Tracy Futbol Club, which has both recreational and competitive teams.

According to Brian MacDonald, management analyst with the city, the local soccer club did not make its 2014 lease payment, $1,432.50, for the club’s 9.55 acres at Legacy Fields. He added that the club, in response to a notice of default, “communicated to staff that it has no intentions to pay the lease or to build the fields.”

No representatives of Tracy Futbol Club were at the meeting. Before the vote, Mayor Brent Ives suggested allowing more time for the club to come up with the payment, but the council then approved Mayor Pro Tem Michael Maciel’s motion to end the contract.

The three other sports leagues in Legacy Fields — Tracy Little League, Tracy Babe Ruth and Tracy Youth Soccer League — are still active with the first 70-acre phase of the 166-acre Legacy Fields along Tracy Boulevard north of Tracy city limits. They are unaffected by the council’s vote.

MacDonald said that he had contacted other leagues to gauge interest in Legacy Fields, with no commitments so far but interest from at least one youth football program.

Tracy Futbol Club President Harry Bourassa confirmed Tuesday afternoon that the club did not make the payment. Bourassa said the issues were not related to Legacy Fields as much as to ongoing dealings with the city in regard to the club’s use of Plasencia Fields and Tracy Sports Complex, both on West 11th Street.

“(The city) did not live up to their promise of rectifying three conditions,” Bourassa said, adding that ongoing issues that had soured the club’s relationship with the city dated back at least a couple of years, and he had tried unsuccessfully to resolve them with the former city parks and community services director, Rod Buchanan, who left the city in July 2013.

Bourassa said that the club had been trying to gain on-site storage containers at the 11th Street sports complexes. He added that in the meantime, the club saw other groups get the same amenities that Tracy Futbol Club had rallied for.

“We have been trying to get that for seven years, and we have been told that we would be afforded those amenities, and that has not developed,” Bourassa said.

Two other issues are the club’s desire for more field use during the summer and delays in getting fully functional electrical service for Legacy Fields.

“I told them that until these conditions have been rectified, we would not move forward with the project,” Bourassa said.

Bourassa added that a potential donor, whom he would not identify, had pledged $200,000 to build Tracy Futbol Club’s four soccer fields at Legacy Fields, but that donor backed away because the city and club could not resolve these matters.

“Because of those issues, that funding has dried up, because we had a certain amount of time to use those funds,” Bourassa said. “If they want a willing partner, they have to work with us, and they’ve been unwilling to do that.”

Contact Bob Brownne at brownne@tracypress.com or 830-4227.

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