Stadium supporters, opponents prepare for vote on bond referendum

Supporters of stadium meet Wednesday night
Supporters of stadium meet Wednesday night
Bumper stickers urging voters to reject the bond referendum
Bumper stickers urging voters to reject the bond referendum

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - With less than 50 days until the November election, both supporters and opponents are planning to bring their message to voters.

Wednesday night, groups for and against the stadium held separate meetings to talk about how they plan to reach out to voters.

"What you are going to see from us is a good, old-fashioned grassroots shoe-leather campaign," said Terry Spencer, who is a spokesman for the group that supports the stadium. "We are going to get out and talk to voters, spread the word, vote by vote by vote.

"We are grassroots," said Scott Harry, who is the spokesman for the group against the stadium. "We are the people of Wilmington. We don't have the deep pockets that Mandalay has."

As we near the election, both sides are trying to get ahead of the game.

Voters must approve a $37 million bond referendum to in order for the stadium to be built.

Some do not want to see the tax increase.

"If you made a list of the top ten priorities of the city, I don't think baseball is going to be in there," said Harry.

But those in favor of the stadium say it would be an investment in making Wilmington a better place.

"This is about economic development," said Spencer. "It is about a boost, a major boost for our local tourism industry. It is about meaningful quality of life improvements that are important to recruiting talented professionals to our area."

Both groups plan to campaign until Election Day.

Americans For Prosperity may pitch in some money to help the cause, according to Harry. AFP already spent $20,000 on an ad campaign earlier this year. They also used automated phone calls, also known as robocalls, to reach out to council members.

Meantime, the Greater Wilmington Chamber of Commerce is working on a $150-thousand ad campaign.

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