Smithville Golf Course Closed

October 30, 2010
by: 
Dwayne Page
Smithville Golf Course Closed
Smithville Golf Course Closed

The Smithville Golf Course is closed.

Smithville Golf Management terminated it's lease with the city as of Saturday, October 23rd and closed the operation on Monday, October 25th. On Thursday, city officials placed "no trespassing" signs at the entrances to the golf course.

The issue is on the agenda for the mayor and aldermen to discuss Monday night, November 1st at 7:00 p.m. during the next city council meeting at city hall.

Farron Hendrix of Smithville Golf Management gave written notice to city officials of his intentions to terminate the lease in August, but the mayor and aldermen have not yet decided whether to lease the municipal golf course and swimming pool to someone else or hire a golf course manager.

Hendrix, in his notice to the city, wrote that the golf course was no longer economically viable for his operation. "We entered into the lease, not for personal gain, but with the hopes of maintaining the golf club as a non-profit entity. However, due to the downturn in the economy, extreme weather conditions, increased competition from surrounding courses, and increased expenses, we can no longer manage this city property at our own personal expense."

The aldermen recently voted to seek written proposals from parties interested in leasing or managing the operation and during the October 18th city council meeting, two were offered, including a four option proposal from Tony Poss and one from Farron Hendrix, who said he could keep the golf course open " during the transition" under certain conditions. One of Hendrix's conditions was that "The City of Smithville purchase our equipment at an appraised value."

Click here to read the specific proposals by Poss and Hendrix (http://www.wjle.com/news/2010/mayor-and-aldermen-review-golf-course-prop...)

The city does not own any golf course equipment.

Mayor Taft Hendrixson said the city could not purchase equipment directly from Smithville Golf Management, because of the competitive bidding requirement. He added that only new equipment could be purchased, if the city were to buy through competitive bidding. Another problem is that no city funds are budgeted this year for golf course equipment, unless the money is taken from the general fund surplus. But that is something neither the mayor or aldermen seem anxious to do.

A workshop was held on Thursday, October 21st to further discuss the proposals of Hendrix and Poss but nothing was settled. During that workshop Hendrix asked if the city would be interested in hiring Smithville Golf Management to continue managing the golf course. Mayor Hendrixson said Hendrix could put his proposal in writing and present it to the city.

On Monday, October 25th, Hendrix submitted two proposals.

Under the first option, Hendrix proposes the following:

1. The City will pay to Golf Club Management $3,000 per month to manage the Smithville Country Club (golf course and swimming pool).

2. Pursuant to T.C.A. 12-3-1003 (state law), the City will purchase Golf Club Management, LLC's mowing equipment and golf carts at an appraised value.

3. Golf Club Management will submit to the City 30% of profits received from green fees.

4. The City will be responsible for all repairs and maintenance of the equipment and property.

5. The City will be responsible for all supplies, utilities, and maintenance of the swimming pool

6. Golf Club Management will submit to the City all money received from the swimming pool gate.

7. Golf Club Management will hire needed employees to operate the swimming pool

8. The City will pay the lifeguards and a lifeguard supervisor during the hours of pool operation.

9. The City will pay the insurance for the Golf Course and the Swimming Pool.

10. The City will transfer the Smithville Country Club utilities to the City's name and will assume responsibility for the utilities beginning Monday, October 25th, 2010.

Under the second option, Hendrix proposes the following:

1. The City will pay to Golf Club Management $4,500 per month to manage the Smithville Country Club (golf course and swimming pool).

2. Golf Club Management will provide mowing equipment and golf carts, and will be responsible for all repairs and maintenance of said equipment.

3. Golf Club Management will submit to the City 30% of profits received from green fees.

4. The City will be responsible for all repairs and maintenance of the Country Club property.

5. The City will be responsible for all supplies, utilities, and maintenance of the swimming pool.

6. Golf Club Management will submit to the City all money received from the swimming pool gate.

7. Golf Club Management will hire needed employees to operate the swimming pool.

8. The City will pay the lifeguards and a lifeguard supervisor during the hours of pool operation.

9. The City will pay the insurance for the Golf Course and the Swimming Pool.

10. The City will transfer the Smithville Country Club utilities to the City's name and will assume responsibility for the utilities beginning Monday, October 25th, 2010.

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