Fuquay-Varina, N.C. — Fuquay-Varina town commissioners voted 3-2 Monday night to create a youth sports program in the town, a decision that drew ire from hundreds of parents.
"I am so angry right now," said Serena Saw, who supports the Fuquay-Varina Athletic Association, a nonprofit group that has administered a sports league for the town since 1989. "I cannot believe the town is willing to do this."
The town's recreational sports program will include baseball, T-ball, softball, soccer, volleyball, football and cheerleading. The measure is expected to take effect for winter sports.
Hundreds of parents, however, attended Monday's meeting to say they want the FVAA to continue running athletic leagues for the town. Some parents even had to be escorted from the meeting by police after they expressed anger at the commissioners' decision.
"(This) is a hostile takeover of a nonprofit organization," said FVAA supporter Chris Kiger.
About 60 percent of participants in FVAA youth sports programs live outside town limits. Many of those parents say they worry they'll be excluded from the official town-sponsored league.
"I am a Fuquay resident in every sense of the word, other than the fact that I do not pay city taxes. I shop in Fuquay. I get gas in Fuquay," said Wake County resident Susan Naylor. "I support Fuquay charities, businesses, and I go to the parks in Fuquay, but because I don't pay taxes, I'm made out to be this second-class citizen."
Town leaders have said they aren't taking over for the FVAA and that both programs can still operate within town limits. They have also said that both Fuquay-Varina residents and non-residents would be able to participate in the programs.
Mayor John Byrne has said he believes that the FVAA and town can continue to work together.