12:06pm

Wed May 2, 2012
Lexington/Richmond

Lexington Council Members Question Golf Spending

The Urban County Council continued debating the merits of the city’s subsidizing of public golf courses Tuesday. City support for the sport has become a hot button issue this budget cycle. The council took another swing at golf funding Tuesday, with council member Jay McChord, a vocal proponent of examining the issue, again pushing for numbers. McChord brought up the topic the previous week, questioning why the city is experiencing brown outs at fire stations while spending $1.2 million dollars to keep its five golf courses open. General Services Commissioner Sally Hamilton gave a report this week showing progress toward lowering that number.

"We adjusted rates, we golf fun, and we made out courses vital again. And in fact, we 're on our way to our best April in five years," she said. 

Hamilton said she’s confident the city’s portion of the bill would much lower this year thanks to a new business plan and the unseasonably warm weather. Still, McChord said the issue deserves more scrutiny.

"In that best year in five years, council, we are still subsidizing golf basically three-quarters of a million dollars," McChord said. 

The council voted to request that the chair of the group responsible for handling that part of the budget, councilman Steve Kay, take suggestions from council members and come back with a figure and rationale for the golf subsidy in the coming weeks.