MARYLAND

Potomac soccer field battle heats up as deal moves forward

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The battle over a set of soccer fields at an organic farm in Potomac has been renewed after some stinging comments from the county executive toward the people who don't want to see the fields happen.

(Photo: Steven DePolo)

Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett continues to push a proposal to turn the farm into athletic fields while the surrounding community vociferously objects. They even submitted a petition signed by 750 residents. But that didn't stop Montgomery Soccer Inc. from signing a lease for the project.

On Friday, Leggett told ABC 7 News that he has listened to the complaints, but they did not sway a final decision.

"It's not left up to the community that lives there to decide whether or not they want something in their community," Leggett said. "It's a broader community perspective.

"If you took that view, you could never establish anything in Montgomery County," he says.

Leggett also said that since the residents don't have a credible argument against the process, they're attacking him instead.

"They can go forward in making them, but that's not going to deter me from making what I think is the right decision," he said.

One of the main things the residents have targeted surrounds campaign contributions - since 2005, Leggett has received $7,500 from a member of the Montgomery Soccer board. The county executive insists that the money hasn't impacted his decision whatsoever.

Residents of the Brickyard neighborhood, though, insist that there has been no transparency and that they haven't heard the last from them.

"A lot of people think this is over because the lease was signed," Potomac resident Ted Duncan said. "I'm here to tell you this thing is not over."

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