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By Mike Lesko | Record Publishing Co.
Streetsboro will have backstops and fencing on all ballfields at City Park repaired before the end of May.
City Council approved the selection of R&T Fence Co. in Streetsboro to handle the chores. Council approved spending up to $25,000 last week by a 6-0 vote. Council member Jeff Allen abstained.
There is $102,000 in the city's 2014 budget that is available to be used at the parks, according to Finance Director Jenny Esarey, so the city would still have at least $77,000 left over after the current ballfield upgrades are done. Council has not specifically determined yet how the rest of that money will be spent.
R&T can start one week after receiving the contract and can complete the job in two weeks, city officials said.
Council member Steve Michniak said the backstops and fencing need upgrading because of "a safety issue."
Council members previously discussed how baseballs or softballs could fly through holes in the protective fencing and potentially injure spectators.
"I'd like to see City Park brought back up to the standards that we promised people," Michniak said. "There's a lot of work that needs to be done."
Council member Tim Claypoole agreed, saying, "The fields need work. They look rough."
After receiving three bids back on the project, Michniak suggested selecting R&T Fence Co.
"R&T has been here for years," he said. "They've got a good reputation. I think it would be easier for the city to say, 'Hey, there's something wrong with it,' and have R&T come out and fix it, than it would be to go out of the city."
Michniak said R&T Fence Co. is also comparable in price or would cost less than other companies that bid on the project.
Council President Julie Field said she would prefer to work with a company that's located in Streetsboro.
Council member John Ruediger agreed, saying, "It seems like a no-brainer" to pick R&T.