Blueprint funding for Doak Campbell Stadium has been approved
The Blueprint Independent Agency voted to allocate $20 million to Florida State University for repairs to Doak Campbell Stadium on Thursday evening. The vote passed 7-5, with the no’s coming from City Commissioners Jeremy Matlow and Jack Porter, and County Commissioners Kristin Dozier, Rick Minor, and Brian Welch.
“I am disappointed of course, but I’m not that surprised,” said Commissioner Kristin Dozier, after the vote. “I am extremely proud of our community for what they did tonight and over the last few months. This is the best conversation we’ve had about economic development and that will continue.”
When asked about how the vote would impact her political future, Dozier did not commit to anything, but did say this issue may have changed her perspective.
“If there is one issue that pushed me to seriously consider a run for the mayor’s office, it is Doak.”
Thirty-seven members of the public spoke in front of the commissioners with just six voicing their support for the funding. David O’Keefe is running for the District 5 seat currently held by Dozier on the Leon County Commission. Dozier has announced she will not be running for reelection for that seat. O’Keefe spoke in opposition to the stadium funding at the meeting.
“I can’t believe that we still have commissioners who still are voting against the clear will of the people,” said O’Keefe in an interview after he gave public comment.
Michael Alford, the newly appointed athletic director at Florida State University, spoke in support of funding. He emphasized that these funds would be put toward necessary safety measures within Doak Campbell Stadium, not luxury seating.
The meeting, which started at 3 p.m., did not end until shortly after 7:30 p.m. Despite the amount of public comment and discussion, no commissioners changed their previous votes.
“I am in favor of these projects because I feel strongly that it is the right thing to do to move this community forward,” said Mayor Pro Tem Curtis Richardson, “to uplift a portion of our community that has been neglected.”
Blueprint funds have already been allocated to the two other public colleges in Tallahassee for athletic building renovations. Florida A&M University received $10 million to make repairs at Bragg Memorial Stadium, and Tallahassee Community College received $1 million to upgrade their athletic facilities.