Webutuck baseball team displaced by septic issues

The North East (Webutuck) Central School District Board of Education (BOE) heard a presentation on Tuesday, Feb. 19, that caused concern for the upcoming baseball season.The district has been dealing with standing water on the high school baseball field, which sits atop the septic leeching field.“The field is not suitable for sports anymore. It doesn’t dry out,” said consulting engineer Jeff Budrow.Athletic director John Zenz asked Budrow if any parts of the field could be used.“It all depends. If you have a wet spring and it doesn’t dry out then obviously it won’t work. If you have nice dry, windy days you might be able to use the infield. I know how integral infield practice is for a team,” he said.Budrow also added that the probability of the field being functional would have to be determined on a day-to-day basis.“It’s really the school’s call. Even though the standing water is more in the outfield the infield gets wet too,” he said.Superintendent James Gratto interjected, “I think we’ll probably abstain from using it. I don’t think students should be out there. We’ll have to find an alternative.” Zenz noted the Amenia Recreation Department has been working with him to use Doc Bartlett field at Beekman Park.“They have their own teams and schedules, though. That’s not a permanent solution. They’ve been very kind and very willing to work with us,” he said.Gratto agreed more solutions would be needed for the septic situation and the displacement of the team.No decisions were made as the board is awaiting possible solutions from Budrow, which will be presented at a future meeting.“Until then I don’t think we can use that field at all,” Gratto said.

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