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Pinson councilman wants turf for football field next season

By Lee Weyhrich

PINSON — Pinson Valley High School was recently upgraded to Class 6A status, and Councilman Joe Cochran wants the new visitors that status will bring to be impressed.

Cochran has been vying for a new artificial turf to be installed at Willie Adams Stadium for the last few months.

“I would like us to entertain the concept, early now, about getting the turf put in next year,” Cochran said.

The field at Willie Adams Stadium earlier this summer
file photo by Gary Lloyd

In January, the Pinson City Council was presented with a $600,000 figure to replace the field with a new artificial turf. In April, the council briefly discussed patching the field. The council had been in discussions with former Jefferson County Schools Superintendent Stephen Nowlin regarding the unsafe state of the field for several months.

In May, the council was presented with an alternate plan to help fund a new turf field. The plan, as proposed by Cochran, would cover roughly half the cost of the turf installation. The city would make a smaller, more affordable monetary contribution, as well as a land trade to the Jefferson County Board of Education that would make up the difference. The plan sounded feasible, but Nowlin was released from his contract not long after being presented with the plan.

The Jefferson County Board of Education in June took steps toward repairing the football field at Willie Adams Stadium, awarding a contract to civil engineering firm LBYD to assess the situation with the current field and plan for a practice field.

Later in June, the board approved Clements Dean of providing “remediation services” to repair the field for $34,800. The work approved was not total correction, just to get through this season.

The consensus seems to be that these repairs did little to really address the major problems.

“We had an Executive Board and a Football Board meeting (two weeks ago), and I understand that the superintendent (is) not pleased with the field,” Pinson City Councilwoman Dawn Tanner said. “It has not turned out the way he envisioned and when he first walked in we knew we had a problem.”

The Pinson Valley varsity football team has been practicing at the field behind the Old Rock School this summer. Pinson Valley’s first home football game is Friday, Aug. 29 against Oneonta.

The Pinson City Council did recently approve of new trash cans with dome lids for the upcoming football season. The council voted to purchase 10 Brute 44-gallon trash cans, which Cochran believes will look better than the white cans with “PV” spray-painted on them used in the past.

Gary Lloyd contributed to this story.

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