Being that it is the first day of December, golfing, especially in Illinois, is often out of season and rarely talked about this time of year.
At this week’s Jacksonville City Council meeting however, aldermen voted in favor of transferring $25,000 to the Links golf course for a potential payroll shortage from the city’s general fund.
Yearly deficits for the Links golf course is typically the norm, and in these most recent years, even deeper. Given that fact, the City Council agreed that it was time to reinstate a Jacksonville golf oversight committee…the idea being to assist The Links work through deficits in funding.
Alderwoman Marcy Patterson, Mayor Andy Ezard and Links golf pro Keith Ward were the main factors behind the decision to reinstate the oversight committee. Given that this committee is being reinstated rather than introduced, Patterson explains how the former oversight committee worked.
“I believe under Mayor Hawking, there was a golf oversight committee. It was made up of a group of community leaders and golfers and people who have an interest in the golf course and in the success of the golf course. It gave the golf pro and the golf leadership people that they could share their ideas with and help them get through different things they were planning or doing. With the concerns that have been risen recently, myself and other members of the city council, we believe now is a good time to bring back the oversight committee,” Patterson explains.
Patterson explains how much the city typically expects from the golf course financially from year to year, and how the past few years, those numbers have been down.
“(Golf) is considered a community recreational event, and it’s not expected that it will ever make money. We would like to see it break even or be closer to breaking even, and over the past couple of years it has not (been close to breaking even), and other money has had to be used to pay for the golf course,” says Patterson.
The golf oversight committee will likely be similar to the former committee in regards to being comprised of city officials as well as community members with an interest in the success of the city’s golf course.