It’s early in discussions, but a third arm of the talks would see Ives Hill Country Club reopen. PJ Simao has kept it closed because he feels the city subsidizes the park golf course through a cheap lease agreement, creating an unfair business environment.
Owners of two golf courses in Watertown, N.Y. are in talks with the city that could result in the sale of the course in Thompson Park, WWNY reported. The deal would also end lawsuits against the city and see Ives Hill Country Club reopen.
Sources say the potential deal is structured so that the city buys the Watertown Golf Club in Thompson Park from Mike Lundy, WWNY reported. The golf course sits partly on land Lundy leases from Watertown.
In return, Lundy would drop his legal action against the city, WWNY reported. Lundy filed court papers in May, setting the stage for a lawsuit against Watertown and two council members over eliminating a public parking area near the club.
The deal would also stop any future litigation surrounding the golf course from PJ Simao, WWNY reported. In return, Simao would reopen Ives Hill Country Club, which has been closed for the past few years. Simao has kept it closed because he feels the city subsidizes the park golf course through a cheap lease agreement, creating an unfair business environment.
Driving the conversation is the fact Watertown’s new zoning changes, if passed, would prohibit Lundy from developing land he owns around the Watertown Golf Club, WWNY reported. The talks include Lundy, Simao, city manager Ken Mix and city attorney Robert Slye.
What would happen to the golf courses? Watertown would have the option to run the Thompson Park course as a municipal course, while controlling dozens of undeveloped acres around it, WWNY reported. The city could choose to close the course, too. The deal may also be structured so that Ives Hill can reopen as a nine-hole course, giving Watertown the right to owning the only 18-hole course in the city.
Sources are careful to point out these talks are preliminary, WWNY reported. Terms of the deal aren’t known, nor is how any payment would be split between the golf course owners for the sale of land and the stopping of any current and future litigation.