Golfers could pay an additional $2 to $150 over the next two years to play Hebert Municipal GC, Les Vieux Chenes GC and The Wetlands GC, all in Lafayette, La. The Marysville (Mich.) GC will also increase its rates by eight percent for members and two to four percent for students.
Golfers may be paying an additional $2 to $150 over the next two years to use three Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG) golf courses, the Lafayette (La.) Daily Advertiser reported.
The Lafayette City-Parish Council is expected to consider final adoption of an ordinance that would increase fees at the LCG golf courses. According to the ordinance, the rate increases are needed to “offset the cost of operations and maintenance,” the Daily Advertiser reported.
The rate hikes are expected to generate about $565,000 over the next two years, according to a memo by Gerald Boudreaux, director of parks and recreation. The increase was reviewed and approved by the recreation advisory commission, he wrote.
Recreation activities cost more for government to provide than the revenue generated through fees. For the first time, LCG’s most recent audit showed operation of the golf courses close to breaking even, said Chief Administrative Officer Dee Stanley, adding that does not include capital costs, the Daily Advertiser reported.
But the fee hikes are still necessary to cover rising operational costs, like chemicals and maintenance, Stanley said.
The increases, if approved by the council, would be phased in over two years, starting this month. Regular green fees would not increase this year, but would go up $4 in January 2015. Junior and senior green fees would go unchanged this year, but would go up $2 in January 2015, the Daily Advertiser reported.
Most passes for all three golf courses would increase by $75 on January 10 and by another $75 in 2015, for a total increase of $150 over the two years, the Daily Advertiser reported.
Fee changes proposed at Hebert Municipal Golf Course and Les Vieux Chenes Golf Course include: increasing the annual pass from $650 to $725 on January 10 and to $800 on January 1, 2015; and increasing the three-course pass from $1,720 to $1,795 on January 10 and to $1,870 on January 1, 2015, the Daily Advertiser reported.
At The Wetlands Golf Course, the proposal includes increasing the annual pass from $1,320 to $1,395 on January 10 and to $1,470 on January 1, 2015; and increasing the three-course pass from $1,720 to $1,795 on January 10 and to $1,870 on January 1, 2015, the Daily Advertiser reported.
In an effort to put its golf course in the black, the city council of Marysville, Mich., voted unanimously to increase membership rates for Marysville Golf Course by about 8 percent. Students and college students will see membership rate increases of 2 to 4 percent, the New Baltimore (Mich.) Voice reported.
“We have the lowest membership rates of any 18-hole golf course in the county,” said Assistant City Manager Randy Fernandez. “In fact we are the lowest of any golf course in the county, in terms of membership rates, other than the nine-hole golf course owned by the city of St. Clair, Pine Shores. We feel this is necessary to increase revenue at the golf course since we do run a deficit.”
Membership for a single resident jumps from $485 to $525 and from $605 to $665 for non-residents. The senior single rates increase from $440 to $475 and from $550 to $605 for non-residents. Married couple rates increase from $710 to $770 and from $890 to $980 for non-residents. Senior married couple rates jump from $640 to $695 and from $800 to $880 for non-residents, the Voice reported.
The rate for students under the age of 18 increases from $195 to $200, and from $245 to $255 for non-residents. For college students under the age of 25, the rates jump from $280 to $290 and from $350 to $365. Family memberships rise from $1,000 to $1,085 and from $1,250 to $1,375 for non-residents, the Voice reported.
The membership rates increased about 8 percent last year, and 38 percent from 2011-2013. Part of the problem, said Mayor Pro Tem Duke Dunn, was the city did not raise membership rates for about 10 years. Still, Dunn said he would have a problem with another 8 or 10 percent hike in 2015. The new rates are still lower than competing courses in the county, the Voice reported.
“I don’t want anyone to think we’re pulling numbers out of thin air,” said Mayor Dan Damman. Fernandez said that to eliminate the course’s $43,000 deficit, membership fees would have to increase by a third, assuming people would continue to pay them, the Voice reported.
“We really need to be competitive in our county,” said Brian Lentz, manager of the course. “We’re very competitive when it comes to carts and greens fees. But we can’t keep giving golf away.” Lentz estimated that the membership rate hike would generate $9,000 in new revenue, the Voice reported.
“A few years ago, we had two problems down there,” said Fernandez. The first was the condition of the course, the second was the continued deficits. Lentz has improved the course to the point where course condition is no longer an issue, Fernandez said.
The weather remains uncontrollable. Lentz said the course lost about six weeks of revenue due to bad spring weather. “In 2012, I was golfing in April,” said Damman. “In 2013, I don’t think I was golfing until June.” The council voted unanimously on December 16 to increase the rates, the Voice reported.
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