Fans wait in a line to get into Hadlock Field on April 6 for the Portland Sea Dogs home opener against Binghamton Rumble Ponies. Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

After deadlocking in an earlier vote with several members absent, the Legislature’s Taxation Committee has now voted in favor of providing $2 million in tax incentives for upgrades to Hadlock Field, home of the Portland Sea Dogs minor league baseball team.

The committee voted 4-4 on Tuesday during a workshop meeting about the bill, L.D. 2258, but absent committee members are permitted to vote after the fact. With all votes counted, the committee voted 8-4 in favor of the income tax credit. Team officials say about $10 million in upgrades are needed for the city-owned stadium – which is also used for high school baseball games and other events – to comply with Major League Baseball standards.

The Sea Dogs are an AA affiliate of the Boston Red Sox.

The renovations would improve the batting cages, weight room, trainers room and kitchen, locker room, office space and bathroom facilities. The upgrades would also bring the facility into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“The team has become part of the tapestry that is Portland and has become a recognized Maine brand around the country,” said state Sen. Jill Duson, D-Portland. “The Sea Dogs are Maine’s hometown team, and they need our help.”

The bill will now go to the full Legislature, with expected votes in the House and Senate in the coming weeks.

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