Fight over Memorial Field goes to court

Posted: Updated:
MOUNT VERNON -

The fight over the future of Memorial Field in Mount Vernon headed to White Plains State Supreme Court Tuesday.

The Mount Vernon City Council has sued Mayor Richard Thomas to stop him from tearing down parts of the park and evicting the Kela Tennis Club. The council filed an emergency injunction after Thomas had crews go in during the middle of the night and deflate the protective bubble over Kela's courts because he insists that he needs that city-owned land to build an eight-lane track and grandstand. He also says Kela hasn't paid rent in years.

Kela is fighting back in a separate lawsuit against the mayor and says the city is violating its 15-year lease.

The lawyers met behind closed doors for hours Tuesday, and when they emerged, the judge decided to keep the injunction in place for the time being.

Lawyers from all sides will be back in court next week, but council members say whatever happens, the City Council will be taking the lead on this project.

The mayor's office released a statement saying in part it is just fighting to remove and address what was illegally dumped at Memorial Field.

There seems to be no clear resolution in sight because the mayor wants the authority to revitalize the field, and the City Council wants the right to turn the field over to the county to complete the project.

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