Golf course continues to need subsidies, write-offs

By Hank Lohmeyer

Money from the Cedaredge water fund, general fund and sewer fund were used to subsidize golf in 2016 providing an amount equal to 30 percent of total golf course funding for the year.

An audit report presented to Cedaredge trustees last week confirmed that in 2016 the Cedaredge Golf Course received large cash subsidies for operations and equipment, primarily from the water fund. Subsidies also came from the sewer fund and from tax revenues in the general fund.

According to the report presented at the trustees' monthly work session, the town golf course fund finished 2016 with a total cash balance and available resources of $4,813. But that was only after various subsidies and write-downs during 2016 of as much as $140,950 were added in -- an amount equal to 30 percent of the golf course's $464,670 total cost of operations for the year.

The following subsidies were extended to the golf course during 2016:

• Write-off of an $81,950 loan from the water fund to buy equipment;

• A $12,000 cash rebate from the general fund to pay for golf course accounting services;

• Cash transfers of $8,000 each ($16,000 total) from the water fund and sewer fund to pay for operations;

• Write-off of $16,000 remaining from a general fund loan to remodel the restaurant;

• The golf course routinely gets $15,000 of the town's annual Lottery payments for open space.

The audit report covering golf course operations for 2016 did not specifically mention any additional depreciation expense for the year. According to the 2015 audit report, accumulated losses at the golf course for 2015 and 2014 totaled over $111,000.