The North Orange County Community College District Board of Trustees voted 4-3 in approval of the Sherbeck Field improvement project. The approval will allow the installation of permanent bleachers, lighting and a sound system.
There were a number of speakers ranging from former to current athletes, residents of the surrounding area and also a letter from Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva. In her message, Quirk-Silva urged that the Sherbeck Field project come to a halt.
The meeting was held Tuesday night in the board room at the Anaheim Campus. The public was again allowed to address the board regarding their concerns.
Many of the residents spoke on the issue they have with the lighting that would be installed on the field.
Mary Francis Gable, a resident of Fullerton, asked the board to not approve the project until a solution for lower-level lighting was made.
The final Environmental Impact Report, published by Dudek in October 2019, stated that the lighting fixtures on the field will be hooded and directed downward to reduce impacts.
Former Hornet Mike Cunningham, spoke in favor of the field improvements. He added that the lights in the stadium will be a symbol of the light that coach Sherbeck was.
Another common theme among residents was having a guarantee that future board members would not be able to change the restrictions that will be placed on the field.
Those restrictions include; any outside groups will not be permitted to use the field lighting on Saturday or Sunday, outside groups will not be allowed to rent the field for performances or concerts, the field sound system will not exceed 91 decibels during the event.
“What will happen 10 years from now?,” said Sandy Masuma Hunt, a Fullerton resident.
Damion Lloyd is concerned about the long term taxpayers’ money by renting the stadium to outsiders. The Fullerton resident imagines five years from now when the presidents and district chancellor rotate out, the school may drive the stadium towards a different direction unless the commitment is enforced.
The board did make a comment that the current guidelines and restrictions are permanent, regardless of the administration.
Voting in opposition to the improvements was, Trustee Area 3 Stephen Blount, Trustee Area 2 Ed Lopez and Trustee Area 5 Jacqueline Rodarte. The student senate trustee from Cypress and Fullerton College both voted against the improvements, but are considered advisory votes and do not add to the final count.
The board approved the plan of permanent bleachers that would accommodate 4,417 but discussed the possibility of looking at the 2,000 seating plan option in a future meeting. A representative of Dudek stated, that a separate analysis would need to be completed for this option.
Lloyd looks forward to seeing the board members passing the reduce seat project to 2,000 seats.
“We’re hopeful they will follow through with a vote…I’m convinced that all parties would then be satisfied,” Lloyd said.
Projected start date of construction was not provided immediately after the vote. In a notice distributed by the NOCCCD, dated April 8, 2019, the expected duration of the project for completion would be an estimated six months.
A previous meeting was held on Tuesday, Oct. 22, which reviewed the Sherbeck Field EIR and allowed the public to voice any concerns or support for the project