County To Buy Scoreboard

SNOW HILL– County officials agreed to purchase a scoreboard for the Northern Worcester Athletic Complex.

The Worcester County Commissioners this week voted unanimously to move forward with purchasing a scoreboard for the fields used by Pop Warner Football at the Northern Worcester Athletic Complex. County staff expect the project to be eligible for Program Open Space funding from the state.

“It would only cost the county $4,307 as this would qualify as a Program Open Space project,” said Kelly Rados, the county’s director of recreation and parks.

Representatives of Pop Warner Football approached the commissioners in early August with a request to donate the scoreboard that used to be on the football field at Stephen Decatur. The high school recently installed what is reportedly the largest LED school scoreboard in the state.  Pop Warner Football wanted to donate the old scoreboard to the county so the county could install it at the Northern Worcester Athletic Complex, where Pop Warner games are played. Staff said installation would cost more than $17,000 and that there were unknowns with the aging scoreboard.

Rather than accept the 30-year-old scoreboard, the commissioners asked staff to look into the possibility of purchasing a new board. Rados on Tuesday presented the commissioners with cost information on both options. She advised that the donated scoreboard would cost about $17,500 to install and would require an additional $1,200 in electrical work.

She said a new scoreboard from Daktronics would cost a total of $43,073 but that the purchase would be eligible for Program Open Space funding. She said through Program Open Space (POS), the county would be reimbursed for 90% of the project cost, meaning the new scoreboard would only end up costing the county $4,307.

She noted that the new scoreboard was smaller than the old Decatur scoreboard. She said the new one was 8 feet by 18 feet.

“We feel this size is more appropriate for the league and the space,” she said.

When asked if the Program Open Space funding was already available, Rados said the county would need to go through the process of seeking funding for that specific project but that it would be eligible for POS funding.

“It does qualify as a project with POS,” Rados said.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.