Sports Council Facing Financial Crisis Over Sports Complex

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Few, if any, individuals in the history of Cannon County have invested more of their personal time and financial resources to support youth sports than Bill Parsley.

Now the local realtor is in need of support from the people of Cannon County, so that youth sports can continue to grow and prosper.

Parsley will make a request to the Cannon County Board of Education Thursday night for $22,000 to help pay off the note on the Sports Complex at Cannon County High School.

Parsley told school board members at Tuesday's workshop that First Bank, which financed the loan for the Sports Complex, is now wanting to call the note.

The installation of the building was arranged by the Cannon County Sports Council, for which Parsley is president, about five years ago.

The Board of Education paid $49,000 for the concrete pad on which the building sits. The steel shell was purchased by the Sports Council and moved here from Chattanooga. Parsley said the Sports Council's investment to date is $81,000, with a total remaining debt of $72,000.

Parsley estimates the current value of the Sports Complex to be $300,000, and that the school board and Cannon County taxpayers have realized a savings of $251,000.

"I need some help and I need it bad," Parsley told the board. "Everybody was suppose to give to this building, but nobody is."

Parsley said the bank has only agreed to re-finance around two-thirds of the $72,000 remaining on the loan. "The bank will not go past $50,000," he said. He added a renewed note would be for three years at three and one-half percent interest.

"The Sports Council is working like it is supposed to but the debt is strangling us," Parsley said.

At a meeting Monday of the Sports Council, Parsley told the members his understanding was each time the note came due it would be able to be renewed and the payments would continue until the note was paid in full; however, First Bank now wants the note (which is past due) paid in full.

Parsley said he was informed they could re-finance the loan but some of the original five people who went on the loan were now unable to be on the refinanced note as they are no longer eligible. He said there were also two of the five who no longer wanted to be on the note but he has talked with them and they are back on board.

Parsley indicated the way the note was written, he will be personally responsible if others don't fulfill their

Parsley presented school board members Tuesday with a letter from CCHS Head Football Coach Joel Schrenk urging them to give their backing to the request for financial assistance.

"When I interviewed for the job at Cannon County, I was excited about everything CCHS had to offer," Schrenk wrote. "The Field house was a major draw for me. I can say without a doubt, that is no building was here and the football team was still housed in the gym I would not have accepted the job."

Schrenk led the Lions to the 2009 District 8-AA championship last season in his first year at the helm.
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