SIERRA VISTA — By the end of the summer, the City of Sierra Vista could have more land for sports fields and the Sierra Vista Unified School District could have some much-needed additional funds.

City Manager Chuck Potucek and Assistant City Manager Victoria Yarbrough proposed the city purchasing the land they are currently leasing from the school district.

Yarbrough said the land they are looking to buy is 20.25 acres and includes all the recreation fields and the youth sports complex building.

The city has been leasing the property since 2018.

Yarbrough told the school district’s governing board last week that the city had the land appraised in October 2019 and received the value in the winter of the same year. The parcel was appraised at $981,000.

“The city council has it in the tentative budget for fiscal year 2021,” Yarbrough said. “If the city council approves the budget and the (SVUSD) governing board approves the sale we would be able to move ahead with the purchase at the start of the fiscal year which is July 1.”

The governing board was mostly receptive to the idea of selling the property, with Hollie Sheriff requesting more information about the property and asking if there was a way to get community input about selling the land.

Superintendent Kelly Glass, who has been working with the city throughout the process, said there isn’t any thing the district can to to make the fields usable like the city plans to do.

“We will be in touch with Kelly to provide her with any information she needs for the presentation,” Yarbrough said.

Yarbrough said they are currently working on the irrigation for the fields. She said they had the wells looked at, and the next phase its to expand the capacity of the wells and replace the lines. She said this would take a year to complete.

The extra fields would benefit the city because the number of youth sports programs are growing and more teams need fields to practice on and play their games on.

“It’s cheaper to renovate old fields than create new ballfields,” Yarbrough said.

More information will be presented at SVUSD’s June meeting. A possible vote may also take place during that time.

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