Sunday, May 4, 2008

The County Should Help Subsidize the Osceola Golf Course

In today’s PNJ, Jamie Page writes about the financial woes of Osceola Golf Course. The golf course’s money problems are particularly burdensome for the city; they subsidize the publicly-owned course. In the past 7 ½ years, the city has spent $3.1 million on Osceola, and it’s not even turning a profit. That’s out of control!

The city should lower their current level of spending on the golf course. I’m not saying the city should stop spending money on it; they should just spend less.

This means the city shouldn’t expand the course like some at City Hall are pushing to do. It would be foolish to try and lure more golfers to a course that will never be able to compete with the privately-owned courses in the area.

I understand that many rely on city subsidies to enjoy the course, but this spending has become too burdensome. The city can’t be the only government that’s spending money on a golf course that's losing money; it’s time for the county to pony-up the money to keep it afloat.

The county should pay at least half of what the city is currently spending on the golf course. That’s the only fair choice; the course sits within the county’s property. Plus, the PNJ says “an estimated 70 percent of Osceola’s players are not city residents”.

The city is paying for a service that's mostly used by county residents; it's time for the county to start paying their fair-share.

If the county doesn’t pay their fair-share, the city should sell the golf course to the highest bidder. The city shouldn’t spend another penny on Osceola Golf Course if the county isn’t willing to help them out. The city has no choice.


jeeperman said...

Lets ask why the golf course is a losing proposition.
Do other private run courses operate at a loss each year?
Do they stay open by charging an appropriate amount per round, etc.?

A golf course is not the same as subsidizing ballparks for kids and adult leagues.

If the privately held courses are operating at a profit (I am assuming they are since they remain open) why should Osceola not be operating the same?

Chris Olson said...

The only reason I'm even advocating for saving the golf course is because I sympathize with the golfers that can't afford to go elsewhere.

If no one in the county thinks we should save the golf course for these golfers, then city should sell it.

There would be no other reason to save it.

jeeperman said...

How much does a round cost at Osceola versus the next more expensive course?

Bill Loney said...

There are at least half a dozen golf courses in this area. Why do we need to prop up this one?

Sparky said...

I don't really care what they do with the golf course either.
I just don't think it is a priority for county funding. I realize people do like to play golf. My son plays golf, but he only took it up after he could afford it. Perhaps the people who use that golf course could get some private funding and purchase it.......Or find a cheaper past time.....if there are any in this day and age.

Chris Olson said...

After seeing comments on my blog and Gulf Coast Gab, it seems quite foolish to keep funding a venture that's losing money.

Also, no one seems interested in saving the course for the people who are using it.

It's time to sell the course.

Anonymous said...

The same council that recommended a special fire assessment for city residents wants to continue to fund a losing golf course located in the County?

That's the problem.

What logic?

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