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Sale of PNG softball land on hold

GROVES — The fate of two girls softball fields remains up in the air as Port Neches-Groves Independent School District trustees place a temporary hold on the sale of a parcel of land.

PN-GISD is looking to sell 12.86 acres of land on Merriman Street near the Effie and Wilton Hebert Public Library. The fields in question are located on about 4.58 acres of land out of a total of about 18 acres.

The league is open to girls age’s four through 14 in Groves, Port Neches and Port Arthur, according to www.pngsl.org

A potential builder, Richard Guseman, has no intention of taking the fields for development and has refused to buy that portion as of now, PN-GISD Superintendent Rodney Cavness said.

“He stated over and over that he wanted to come to Port Neches and be a great neighbor and had zero intentions of taking the fields from the girls.”

The cost of the land the fields sit upon come with a price tag of about $169,000 or $37,500 per acre.

Trustee Rusty Brittain echoed previous comments that the board doesn’t want to displace the softball girls during a recent board meeting.

“I don’t think it’s anybody’s intention to displace the girls softball,” Brittain said.

The district had an agreement with the league beginning in 2004, Brittain said, that allowed the district to recover the land should PN-GISD have plans for the acreage.

The city of Port Neches and PN-GISD have swapped parcels of land in the past and trustees wondered if the city would be willing to swap the fields for land at Park and Grigsby. The city is currently waiting for an answer from the YMCA for the corner acreage for possible development.

Additionally, the city of Groves has toyed with the idea of acquiring land from Huntsman near the corner of Hogaboom Road and Twin City Highway with a possible goal of adding a sports complex that would include softball fields.

“I will not support, nor recommend anything that displaces these little girls, period,” Cavness said.

Trustees tabled the issue pending future discussion.

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