No Refunds for Rome Pop Warner Parents Despite Cancellation of Season After One Game
Pop Warner parents in Rome won't be getting any refunds after the tackle football season was canceled in three Central New York towns.
The tackle football season in Utica, Rome, and Oneida was cut short after spectators came onto the field and allegedly physically assaulted officials and other fans during a game. Now parents want a refund on registration fees.
The Rome Colts Pop Warner Football Board of Directors has decided not to issue any refunds this season. "There are many program expenses each season to ensure your child's safety," the organization shared in a letter released on Monday, October 11.
As of October 1, 2021, Rome Colts have paid more than $20,000 for equipment, grounds expenses, as well as insurance, and mandatory fees. "This does not account for National Grid, stocking the concession stand or long term improvement projects, including bleacher and scoreboard updates."
If the Rome Colts want to host any home games in 2022, safety measures must be put in place. "We must fence the game field before next season which is estimated between $30,000 and $40,000," the organization wrote. "To fully pay for this season and host a 2022 tackle football season, the Rome Colts programs needs approximately $70,000."
The decision to deny registration refunds wasn't an easy one for the Board. "This was a hard decision for all of us, as participants and volunteers. It is our hope that our organization as a whole will learn from this experience and move forward into next season with dignity, respect, and Rome Colts' pride."
Jacqueline Callender isn't happy about the decision. "We didn't ask for the season to abruptly end and it's so unfair that you get to keep the money when our kids played 1 full game the entire season," she shared on Facebook. "Where is this new equipment," Jacqueline asked. Season expenses? What season? Helmet reconditioning -- whatever the hell that is. These kids didn't even play enough. My son probably played 5-8 minutes out of the whole 1 game they played."
Read the full letter on the Rome Colts Pop Warner Facebook page.