Mayor Chris Beutler today announced the 13 members of a committee that will develop a strategy to fund both municipal golf operations as well as repair and replacement of infrastructure. The Mayor will address the committee at its first meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, November 3 at the Parks and Recreation Office, 2740 "A" Street. A draft plan developed by the committee over the next few months will then be reviewed and discussed at a community meeting before a recommendation is presented to the Mayor early next year.
"My charge to the committee is to develop a strategic approach to adequately fund regular operations and maintenance as well as capital improvements while still providing quality golf experiences at a reasonable cost," Mayor Beutler said. "I want to thank the members of the committee for helping us meet this community challenge."
The City has developed, managed and operated municipal golf courses for more than 80 years, and the program now includes one 18-hole course in each quadrant of the city as well as the nine-hole Ager Golf Course in Central Lincoln. Parks and Recreation Director Lynn Johnson said Lincoln is following a 10-year national trend of fewer golfers playing less rounds.
"Declining revenues put the program in the difficult position of being unable to reinvest in the infrastructure repair and replacement projects that keep our golf facilities in good condition over time," Johnson said. "The projected funding needed to keep golf course infrastructure in serviceable condition is about $750,000 a year." He said no significant investment in golf course infrastructure has occurred during the past 15 years, except for the 2012 replacement of the Holmes clubhouse.
Johnson said priority projects that remain unfunded include cart path renovation at all courses and the following:
The Lincoln City Golf program is an enterprise fund, with revenues generated from golf operations supporting operating and capital costs. The revenues are primarily greens fees and cart rental fees. Additional revenue from lease of cell tower space on golf course property is directed to capital projects.
Meetings of the new committee will be open to the public, and agendas and meeting summaries will be available at the Lincoln City Golf program website at lincolncitygolf.org (click on the information link). A report of the findings and recommendations of the committee will also be available at that website and at all five municipal golf clubhouses.