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BOE finalizes deal for youth sports field use in south Forsyth

SOUTH FORSYTH — An agreement between the county’s government and school system to bring additional recreational space for youth sports to south Forsyth was finalized Thursday.

Under the deal, the county will be responsible for renovating an upper practice field at Lambert High. In exchange for installing artificial turf, the Board of Education will allow the county to use the field for public recreation after football practice.

The county commission, which approved the arrangement Jan. 27, agreed to reimburse the school system up to $495,000 for the installation, and the agreement will last for 10 years.

Both parties determined county-sponsored recreational programming will be allowed January-June on every weekday except Wednesday from 6:30-10 p.m., July-December on every weekday except Friday during the same times and all day Saturday and Sunday throughout the year.

Lambert’s principal and the commissioners may agree on variations of this setup as long as the times are not less than the original plan.

The school board will be responsible for installing outdoor lighting. Dan Jones, chief financial officer for the district, said Lambert’s boosters have been raising funds.

“The Board of Education is responsible for getting it installed, but we’re not paying for it,” Jones said.

At the end of the turf’s life-cycle, the commission can decide whether to replace the field. If it does, the county would be responsible for paying for it, and the 10-year contract would start over.

Only one concern was aired before the vote, with BOE chairwoman Darla Light wondering whether future Lambert principals would take more issue with ending practice by 6 p.m.

The field is expected to be ready by July.