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Cedaredge back nine is a western Colorado jewel

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Dear Editor:

Cedaredge doesn't have a golf course problem. Cedaredge has a problem communicating with its citizens about the value of this community asset. Recent letters to the DCI editor suggested that increases in water rates are tied to the operating cost at the golf course. That is not true as stated in the Town of Cedaredge newsletter. "Current water rate revenues are inadequate to pay the costs the town expects to incur, including recent debt service." Peter is not robbing Paul, in fact no larceny is occurring. Water rates are evaluated on the actual costs of providing water to the residents. The new sewer plant was a requirement and we should be glad there are so many new residents who have moved into the golf course community spreading out these costs among us.

Residents of Cedaredge should be thankful and supportive of a jewel of an 18-hole golf course. It attracts visitors to our community which supports not only our great recreational asset but our businesses, restaurants, motels and service employers. The addition of the Green Lizard par three has made the back nine more enjoyable for new and old golfers.

Cedaredge real estate is selling well. Currently, there are at least seven new homes under construction or planned in the golf course area; they all are contributing sales taxes, hiring local businesses and in the long run adding to our property tax base.

The idea of closing the back nine would not substantially cut expenses. The pro shop would still need to operate; water share costs would still need to be paid. The cost saved would be lost many times over by the reduction in play by out-of-towners and tournament play. Let's face it, no out-of-town golfer is going to drive to Cedaredge to loop a nine-hole course twice.

We find it interesting that people who originally moved to the Cedaredge area because of its great amenities are now ready to do punitive damage to the course. The citizens of Cedaredge should resent the comparison with the Devil's Thumb golf course economics. We are fortunate that our course has no debt and can operate efficiently and provide such a great amenity to our community, our children and visitors. Be thankful for the foresight and hard work of Cedaredge leaders who saw the Cedaredge Golf Course as an economic generator bringing in crucial primary dollars.

So, let's ask ourselves: Is the 18-hole course benefitting anyone except golfers? Go ask Big John's how their lumber sales are going, ask some electricians and plumbers if those new houses aren't keeping them busy, ask the restaurants if they ever serve visitor golfers, ask the motels and lodges if they host some out-of-town golfers, ask FoodTown if their deli gets some hungry golfers, ask the folks who are on the payroll at the golf course if they spend their dollars in Cedaredge. There are a lot of jobs directly and indirectly tied to the golf course Let's not cut off our noses to spite our faces. We have something unique and valuable; don't squander it.

Nancy Sturgill
President
On behalf of the Cedaredge Ladies Golf Club

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