East Ridge soccer controversy back in court - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

East Ridge soccer controversy back in court

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EAST RIDGE, TN (WRCB) -- From the soccer field to the courtroom the East Ridge Soccer Association (ERSA) and city leaders butt heads on who owns the equipment and the rights to use the soccer fields.

ERSA's lawyer claims the association spent more than $100,000 on equipment the city has locked away, but has no paperwork for.

ERSA Attorney Chris Clem says, "They don't. East Ridge has admitted to us they have no receipts, no canceled checks."

Tuesday, East Ridge city attorney John Anderson says the equipment was purchased for Camp Jordan and should remain there.

We asked Anderson if claims were true the city has no proof of buying the equipment, he would only give us this reply.

"We are prepared to take our case to the court ordered mediation and we will be here on the 29th."

Clem says ERSA has repeatedly tried to come to terms with the city only to be told there's nothing to negotiate.

"We have offered a lot of times to the city to use our assets," Clem says. "They flat out said no, we are going to seize them."

Anderson denied those claims.

City manager Tim Gobble says the equipment is locked away for safety reasons.

Clem says the timing of this case couldn't be worse especially with registration happening now.

Last season, more than 1,800 people were signed on and more expected for the upcoming year.

Clem claims there isn't much profit from the league so money shouldn't be what's causing the city to sever ties.

"East Ridge tends to run everything into the ground so I don't know if they will benefit monetarily," Clem says.

The sides are due in court for mediation Thursday.

The full case will be heard on February 29th at 9am.


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