Fond du Lac Baseball Inc. will leave its property at the Fond du Lac Youth Baseball Complex that was taken over this year by the Fond du Lac School District.

A Sept. 2 statement by Tim Twohig, president of Fond du Lac Baseball Inc., on behalf of the organization states the board of directors agreed to leave the complex intact for future generations of children to use by not removing the fencing, lighting, bleachers, benches, scoreboards, netting and other fixtures.

Earlier this year, Fond du Lac School Board voted to withdraw a 30-year-old contract with Fond du Lac Baseball Inc. that had allowed the organization to lease school district property to operate and equip four baseball diamonds. The expired lease granted Baseball Inc. six months to remove personal property, and that deadline passed Aug. 25.

“We are honored to have had the privilege to be good stewards of this land for 30 years after turning tillable acreage into a baseball park,” the press release said.  “We are proud to have been able to provide a beautiful, fun, safe facility for generations of children to learn about baseball, teamwork, sportsmanship, pride in victory, grace in defeat and the personal potential that lies within each individual ballplayer.”

The organization had previously threatened to remove or sell all personal property from the complex on Morningside Drive after the school board moved to instead run the program through the Fond du Lac Recreation Department in cooperation with another group, Fond du Lac Youth Baseball.

Fond du Lac School Superintendent Jim Sebert said the district is grateful for the service Baseball Inc. provided to the youth of Fond du Lac for decades, and by choosing not to remove the fixtures that were donated by the Fond du Lac community, they showed respect to those donors.

“The district maintenance department and recreation department, in partnership with Fondy Youth Baseball, will continue to maintain the complex and diamonds across the district as they did this past summer,” Sebert said. “Together, Fondy Youth Baseball and the recreation department recently completed a successful baseball season for the kids of this community, and that will continue for summers to come.”

Baseball Inc. will continue to operate Little League diamonds on the Fourth Street property it owns. The press release states that although the Fond du Lac School District Recreation Department declined multiple offers to schedule games on the diamonds in 2015, the hope is the space will be considered for use by the community in the future.

In June, questions arose as to why Fond du Lac Baseball Inc. had padlocked the gates at the Fourth Street complex. Twohig said there were costs involved to use the diamonds and they had requested rent from the school district. The offer was declined by the district. Twohig later said there was operational money, but an agreement had to be reached between Baseball Inc. and Youth Baseball.

The school district cited multiple reasons for ending the contract and re-establishing public ownership of the facility, including lack of notification for improvements and naming of diamonds, the group’s isolation of itself and finances, and negative statements made about the school district.

Twohig said the group had made more than $1 million in improvements over the years and wanted to remain in control.

— Reach Sharon Roznik at sroznik@fdlreporter.com or 920-907-7936; on Twitter @sharonroznik.