How the Muni Golf Course Highlights the Sheer Hypocrisy Around The City’s Financial Situation

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Well, I’m sure you saw this post coming in light of the request to the Council for $25K for a study of Muni by the Robert Trent Jones Foundation.

I can assure that you tonight , you will not hear a peep from the Council on how dire the city’s fiscal picture is and how it is incumbent upon them to protect our seniors and our taxpayers from spending a single penny on anything. As it is the golf course, apparently the concern for seniors and taxpayers is a quaint notion. For anything but the golf course, say basketball hoops or spending $25K on parks or funding the museum, we certainly cannot afford or justify that in any way, shape or form.

I can also assure you that our local editors and pundits will find no problem spending $25K on the golf course even though for every other expense or initiative, they constantly summon the demon of our unknown fund balance and “unaccounted” funds. Funny, but it seems that the golf course has some eerily similar financial and operational issues with its revenue projections which just may bite taxpayers. But, as it is the golf course, the normal fears and demagoguery are kept off the pages and airwaves.

Nor do you get the stern rebuke of why are we focusing on golf versus the very serious, ponderous work of our city’s finances and cutting expenses? The answer: ‘cus it’s something they support and want and hence is not subject to the usual wailing and gnashing and thrashing about that accompanies any other item someone else may want. How dare you question that!

Of course, the above will be dismissed as “city taxpayers don’t pay anything for the golf course”. I’ve already dispensed with the falsity of that claim several times so I’m not revisiting that. (Fair warning: if you comment with any derivative that “city taxpayers don’t pay anything..”, you will get red carded from posting here)

Finally, I will be curious on how our “fiscal’ and “business” minded council and pundits justify lowering fees to golfers while incurring these large expenses in light of the financial pressures on the course. I’m really curious what business model justifies lowering price and incurring more cost in a service oriented business under high competitive pressure.

All I’m saying is that there is a delicious amount of hypocrisy on what gets funded, how and why in our small city all under the guise of “priorities” and “running things like a business”.

And for the record: spending the $25K is the right thing to do and I’m in favor of the effort at Muni to bring in some consulting and develop some type of strategy to build and restore the asset value of the course.

I say that even with the risks that taxpayers may get left with the tab if the operations and finances of the course are not improved. After all, it is a public course.

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