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Tyrone Little League facing troubled financial times

The Tyrone Little League has been a staple of the community for over 50 years giving young children a place to learn baseball. As the 2004 season comes closer, a new group of officers will have to fight hard to make sure the 2004 season can happen.
In September, elections were held to install new officers. Nine new officers took positions to voluntarily serve the league and after they took office, the group found out it would be a tough year.
“We found out there was 68 cents in the checking account,” said John Yanchick, a newly installed officer. “We are just starting to investigate what happened. We are trying to re-create the paper trail from past years and find out what happened.”
The new group of officers are facing nearly $5,000 in bills that are past due or currently owed and are facing a $1,600 payment on the charter to Little League headquarters in Williamsport.
“We can’t say what happened yet,” said Yanchick. “One thing we can say is that we are working with an accountant to make sure that this will not happen again. We are going through the bank statements to find out where things went wrong. If impropriety is proven, this board will take the appropriate action.”
The nine new board members are Dick Stever, Joe Faretta, Greg Ferguson, John Molnar, Gregg Fuoss, John Yanchick, Bill Zimmerman, Frank Germino and Dave Miller.
The new board is facing the challenge of making up the deficit and is working to improve the league and make it better for the kids.
“We are putting good accounting practices into place,” said Yanchick. “There will be a set of checks and balances. All bills will be paid in checks so we can create a paper trail with every transaction. We are starting brand new, and we want to put a foundation into place that can serve as a model for this league for years to come.”
The new board has already started to look at the State College Little League as a model.
“We have talked to State College and Bellwood Little League,” said Joe Faretta, a Tyrone LL board member. “The State College president Sam Phillips is the president of Gardners Candies in Tyrone. That league is well organized and hosted the 2003 Eastern Little League regional tournament. They do things right and we want to use that league as a model for our league.”
The new Tyrone Little League board is positive that things can be turned around.
“We are looking to get back into the black this year,” said Faretta. “We have approached local businesses about advertising signs on the outfield wall. We are brainstorming about fundraising ideas. We hope to have ideas formulated and ready to vote on during our October 29 board meeting.”
Gregg Fuoss is the chairman of the fund raising committee.
“We want the kids who play in Tyrone Little League to have the best opportunity,” said Fuoss. “We want to work through the community to give them good equipment, good uniforms and a great experience through baseball. We are not here to point fingers. We are looking to rebuild this league and make it better for children in the future. We are only two weeks into this project and are still getting our feet wet.”
Rebuilding this league is a large task and it will take more than the nine elected officers to accomplish it.
“We need the help of the community,” said Faretta. “We need people to help not just financially, but by volunteering time. All nine of us on the board are committed to making this league successful and a great experience for the children of Tyrone. Not one of us is in this to make our name well known. We are volunteering to rebuild a program that has served this community for over 50 years and we want to do things that are in the best interest of the kids who play here.”
The new Tyrone Little League Board of Directors is on a mission.
“We are going to recover from this,” said Fuoss. “We will need the help from the parents of kids who play Little League. We will need the help of the business community. We hope to have a fund raising plan in place in the near future and we hope that the Tyrone community rallies around our organization as we fight back.”