SHA Board Members met to discuss comments made at a December 5, 2013 School Board meeting about the proposal to put lights on the six tennis courts at T. C. Williams High School. During the School Board meeting, members had discussed installing the conduits and junction boxes for the proposed lights without Council approval. ACPS staff noted during the meeting that the community was told repeatedly by the Athletic Director, tennis coach, and ACPS staff that the students had no need for lights at the new tennis courts. SHA Board Members were surprised to learn from the School Board meeting that the ACPS has no funds now or in the near future to install the lights on the tennis courts. ACPS staff noted that the Parks and Recreation Department appears to be the “driver” for the addition of the lights to this project. SHA Board Members speculated that if City Council were to approve the installation of lights at the tennis courts, the Parks and Recreation Department may suddenly come up with the funds and “transfer” them to ACPS or by some other budget “drill.”
SHA Board Members updated their October motion supporting the courts but not the lighting them: “Seminary Civic Association and Seminary Hill Association, Inc. support the construction of school tennis courts on the T. C. Williams campus and support the continuation of the prohibition of lighting on any athletic fields, such as tennis courts and the football stadium.” They also agreed to send a letter and a copy of the transcript of the School Board’s discussion about the lights for the tennis courts to City Council.