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LDS Softball Teams Allowed to Play at City Field Free One Night a Week

LDS Softball Teams Allowed to Play at City Field Free One Night a Week

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SUNSET, Utah (AP) -- City officials have agreed to allow Mormon church softball teams to play on Sunset's ball field one night a week at no charge.

The agreement resolves a dispute that arose when Daniel Hole, athletic director of the church's Sunset Stake, said the city owed church members access once a week, preferably Thursday, to the lighted ball diamond. He said the use was provided for in a Sept. 27, 1946, written agreement in which the church sold the eight-acre parcel to the city for $10.

City leaders originally said they had no record of the agreement. However, former Mayor Norm Sant revealed in a recent meeting of city leaders and representatives of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that the agreement may have been accidentally thrown away while he was in office, said Mayor Jan Galbraith.

Sant, who was mayor from 1977 to 1986 and from 1989 to 1993, said clerks may have accidentally thrown away the agreement while cleaning out the attic in the old City Hall at his request, Galbraith said.

As a result, city leaders have told the stake officials they may use the field this years, Galbraith said.

This summer, the church teams will have use of the field on Thursday nights.

The agreement also will be honored in future years, although a specific day of the week has not been determined. A final written agreement between the church and city is forthcoming.

"I'm not going to hold (the church softball league) hostage while we're waiting for the document (to be drafted by the church)," Galbraith said.

The church league is scheduled to run through August, making the field available for the city's annual fall softball leagues.

Stake President Kent Smith said negotiating parties from the church and the city reached a consensus, although no final document has been presented.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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