It's time to dump The Golf Club
By Alan Metcalfe
Published Thursday, September 3, 2015 8:30 am
All of us Deltoids should congratulate Orchard City on its financial audit report. The town has liquid assets to operate for six years, a remarkable evaluation. Apparently Mayor Don Suppes and the trustees are proving their worth to the electorate. Assuredly, city manager Melissa Oelke and her staff are equally effective working for Orchard City residents.
Conceding differences in scale, it should not be impossible to see a similar report for Delta City Hall. Last fall, by the narrowest of votes, citizens allowed city council to juggle financing of The Golf Club's operations by combining all recreation sites. The latest audit report shows a continuing drain on city reserves to support the tiny number of people who use The Golf Club. In other words, Devil's Thumb remains an untenable drain on the utility reserve funds paid into by all citizens of Delta. There is no apparent end in sight for this absurdity. Considering that most of the city utility rate payers have never even seen the golf course, this is an unfair burden on the vast citizen majority.
Here are two suggestions: 1) Each year raise the dues and fees paid by golfers to cover the expenses that exceed income of The (nearly-private) Golf Club; or 2) Cedaredge has a similar problem with their golf course -- expenses exceed revenue, the difference being paid by non-golfing citizens. Therefore, combine golfing operations to just one of the sites to eliminate duplicated expenses.
Interviewed by the DCI, Delta's director of parks, recreation and culture, Wilma Erven, alluded to changes in The Golf Club operation, which is getting a close look, she said.
Not enough. Taking "a close look" is a phrase used to avoid making decisions. It's time for city council to unburden the vast majority of Delta's citizenry from supporting the social lives of the few at their Club.