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Palm Coast Pitches New Management at Loss-Plagued Palm Harbor Golf Club, But Revenue Riddle Remains

| August 27, 2014

Palm Harbor Golf Club has been a money loser for the city, and the five-year contract with Kemper Sports hasn't changed matters. The city is considering changing management companies. (© FlaglerLive)

Palm Harbor Golf Club has been a money loser for the city, and the five-year contract with Kemper Sports hasn’t changed matters. The city is considering changing management companies. (© FlaglerLive)

When Kemper Sports Management took over the Palm Harbor Golf Club on behalf of Palm Coast’s city government to run it as a city club, Kemper pledged to make the venture profitable. That has never happened. The golf club has lost roughly $100,000 every year, though Kemper hasn’t: the city subsidized the operation with tax dollars from the general fund. Through May, the golf club is just over $90,000 in deficit. The city is projecting a deficit of $225,000 this year. Last year’s deficit was $130,000.

The contract with Kemper expires Nov. 6. The city is looking to replace the management company, if not rethink the way it operates the golf club and the city’s tennis center, which has also run annual deficits under Kemper management. Five companies, including Kemper, submitted proposals to win the contract. Three made the short list: Kemper, based in Northbrook, Ill., Billy Casper Golf of Vienna, Va., and Chicago, and Down to Earth Golf of Tangerine, Fla.


A city administration team analyzed the proposals and recommended Billy Casper to the city council on Tuesday as several dozen golfers and fans of Kemper Sports jammed the small council conference room at City Marketplace (and spilled out into an adjoining room). Those fans don’t want to see the management company replaced.

And council members themselves were skeptical.

“Basically,” council member Bill McGuire said, “it’s the same presentation that Kemper made. I’m still looking for what makes Billy Casper better than Kemper.” He did not hear the sort of specifics that answered his concerns.

“The real difference between the companies,” Luanne Santangelo, the city’s parks and recreation director, said, “was really based on the information they provided and our goal of continuing to have our Palm Harbor Golf Club be sustained for our future. And what we felt Billy Casper provided to us was an opportunity to reach that goal at some time in the future.”

But that had also been the reason Kemper was chosen five years ago, while golf participation has continued to decline nationally—a decline Casper acknowledges and told the city in its presentation that it wasn’t making promises of overnight success.

“So Luanne, would it be fair to say the decision was more of a subjective one than a statistical one?” McGuire asked.

“Yeah, it was based on the information they provided, what they proposed as far as programs, operations, marketing,” Santangelo said. “We did not necessarily look at the financial budgets and things, knowing that that is something that we’ll look at coming up, as we negotiate a contract.”

Billy Casper manages some 140 golf courses in 28 states, roughly half of those being municipal courses, and nine of them in Florida, including the St. Johns Golf and Country Club in St. Augustine.

But McGuire was focusing less on the gloss of each company’s submissions than on its potential to end the city’s handouts: he was asking questions from the perspective of a taxpayer rather than from that of an avid golfer, though the city’s presentation was focused more on what Casper would do for its golfers than for the city’s bottom line. When he asked how many contracts Billy Casper “has been excused from,” Santangelo did not have the answer.

“What is Billy Casper  going to do that Kemper doesn’t already do?” McGuire asked.

“It wasn’t so much what one does over the other,” Santangelo said, “it was what they were proposing to implement at our facility, and that was really a variety of pricing and benefit options,” such as for player development.

“We’ve had Kemper for five years, and we’ve made it very clear to them that our goal was to move this program to as much a break-even as possible,” Mayor Jon Netts said. “They had presented us with a five-year plan. They have not met that. If you go with Casper, I am assuming we’re going to lay out the same objective, to move this thing to a break even. Do they start at ground zero?”

They do, Santangelo said, with Casper expecting to increase the number of rounds played, and the number of players using the course, though Kemper has made similar efforts without much success.

Netts wasn’t convinced. “I can promise you the sun, the moon and the stars, but if I don’t deliver, oh  well, I’m sorry,” he said, suggesting incentives to encourage better production.

McGuire was interested in building an “escape clause” in the contract.

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Netts noted that numerous current users have sent dozens of emails to council members telling them they like the company they have now, along with its services and amenities. Netts was worried about existing staff getting laid off should Casper win the contract. And he pointed out that the level of satisfaction from golfers, anyway, is high. “Everybody has been pretty much universally positive about their golfing experience,” he said. “So my sense is that we’re not going to improve profitability by trying to squeeze more rounds of play out of our existing players. They’re already happy. They’re already enjoying their experience. They already like the restaurant, etc. It seems to me, the issue is how do we increase the rounds of play, and that means attracting new people. I’m not sure I see that addressed either by Kemper or by Casper.”

“I think we’d have the opportunity to work with Casper because that is a priority,” Santangelo said, citing the United States Tennis Association’s—and the city tennis courts’– revitalizing youth involvement by implementing some changes in how young players are taught. “Golf hasn’t gotten to there yet,” Santangelo said, “and even though we in recreation have said you need to have more of a recreation perspective and provide programs that will bring in new players, because yah, you’re right, the current people who are golfing are going to continue to golf as long as their health and finances allow them to do. What we need to do is grow the game from youth and on up.”

Netts later pressed the point. “It would be disastrous to change management companies and have the quality of the course go down. That’s no way to improve your bottom line. The only reason in my mind for changing is a) the possibility of increasing rounds of play, which means increasing profitability, but with the assurance that the quality of the experience doesn’t go down.” Reducing reliance on tax dollars should be a priority, he said. But foremost on his mind, Netts said, is “the quality of the experience.”

If Casper gets the contract, McGuire said he’ll want to see the manager’s resume as he doesn’t want the city to be a training ground for Casper’s staff.

Dave Ferguson, the outgoing council member, had one question: how much of the examination of the applicants was based on reducing the city’s subsidies. Chris Quinn, the city’s finance director, said it was a concern “at the back of our minds,” while the search committee focused on programs that would eventually decrease reliance on subsidies. Still, Quinn said, “there are no guarantees.”

The city is also hoping to change management at the tennis center, replacing Kemper. But the only company to bid for that change was—Kemper. The city is considering asking for bids again.

Bill Lewis, missing his fifth meeting in a row because of illness, was not part of the discussion. (At the Flagler County School Board, when board members are ill, they participate by phone.)

 

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52 Responses for “Palm Coast Pitches New Management at Loss-Plagued Palm Harbor Golf Club, But Revenue Riddle Remains”

  1. Tom Jacks says:

    So, Kemper hasn’t delivered what they promised, but let’s not change management companies because they may not deliver what they promise.

    • Harrison McDonald says:

      The city golf courses are a great asset to the community. They attract new residents and that supports the housing market. Just their presence enhances the lifestyle of all residents. I am not a golfer, never have been, but enjoy the beauty they add to Palm Coast. Let’s not pinch the pennies and screw up a good thing!

  2. David Sullivan says:

    As I remember Billy Casper Golf managed Indigo Lakes in Daytona for a while
    And managed to make it worse. Indigo Lakes is no longer with Casper and
    Doing much better now.

  3. bruce meyer says:

    let me help you. I golfed there once, and I love to golf.. First of all this is a public course yet you enforce a dress code like you belong to Grand Haven or Pine Lakes. get over yourself it’s a public course. Second the green fees are too high, just like a private club, (your not ) also differnet rates for out of town players. Now if you ran some specials and attracted twice as many golfers at a reduced rate that would add up to more money per day. Maybe I’m wrong I’m not to good at MATH…….

    • Evelyn Shellenberger says:

      Bruce, I agree with you totally. I love that course but the fees are just to high. It is a city course and they need to run it that way. I would play there if fees were reduced to a reasonable rate. As it is I go to St. Augustine.

  4. I play golf at Palm Harbor a couple of times a month.. The course is well managed, in very good shape, fun to play, reasonably priced and attracts visiting golfers from all over. I have played golf with many out of towers. I used to be a member of Ocean hammock which charges close to $1,000 a month, plus cart fees!
    Palm Harbor is competitive and much more affordable. It is a credit to Palm Coast and by far the best public course within 75 miles in my opinion.

    • JJMcGruff says:

      To Mr. Chanfrau, I don’t agree that this course is at all afforadable! I play at the Grand Reserve in Bunnell for an $18.00 green fee after 4:00 pm. Palm Harbor offers nothing close to that rate! OH and by the way, I live in the F section and PH would be a lot more convienent to play.

    • Barbara Walters says:

      your are a dreamer and a lawyer ! PH compare to Ocean Hammock !

  5. Groot says:

    Bunch of crooks and mismanaging misfits in Palm Coast. We have been offended at Palm Harbor, Pine and Cypress. We now play golf, at least twice a week, at Grand Reserve, Riverbend and Halifax. Just another example of what is wrong with Palm Coast; low incomes, rudeness, incompetence and mismanagement. Sorry folks, but this place has a track record and a reputation now.

    • Local says:

      All of these problems can be fixed by attracting higher end businesses, which bring with them higher end jobs who are worked by higher end people.

      Provide tax incentives to High Tech, Biotech, ect… and you’ll see a lot of positive changes. And certain areas (r/p sections) will get cleaned out.

    • Genie says:

      @ Groot; Your comments interest me….can you please be more specific about why you prefer playing the other courses? Low incomes? Are our courses not fancy enough for you? Rudeness, incompetence?

      Hope you will be more specific, please. It will never get fixed if we don’t know what the problems are.

      I’ve played each of the courses and find each to be unique, which is why I feel Palm Harbor deserves to be in the mix. If you are looking for country club atmosphere, that we are not. Is that the problem?

  6. BIG JOHN says:

    Why should the citizens of Palm Coast subsidize a golf course? If some citizens want to play golf they should pay for it and not expect their fellow citizens to pay for it. Let the golfers pay to play golf without burdening the rest of us for their benefit. Maybe we have too many golf courses and we need to let the market forces determine which ones will stay open without taxpayer financed subsidies.

  7. Brad says:

    If anything, the City needs to look at other management companies for the Tennis Center OR insist Kemper hire someone that knows tennis. Tennis and golf are not the same.

  8. GolfGuy says:

    The easy answer is to say that the City of Palm Coast should operate Palm Harbor. However, is that a viable option? Daytona Municiple recently hired Valleycrest to manage their two courses. On the other side of the argument…New Smyrna Beach is successful managing that course. Palm Coast could find talented Golf Pros, Superintendents, and other staff with in the city limits, that are Palm Coast tax payers, to help with a transition. The trouble with management companies is that they will not lose their own money. Look at Kemper…a good chunk of the losses at Palm Harbor were the management fees. Bring in more golfers? From where? In Palm Coast there are many competeing courses. Not to mention the courses in our neighboring counties. Golfers will drive 20 miles to save $5 on greens fees. There is not a correct answer! The City of Palm Coast, in my opinion, should put together a golf committee, volunteer or paid, full of local industry professionals and local golfers to help scrutinize budgets and expenditures. Someone needs to look out for our best interest…a management company will not!

  9. RC says:

    What is never discussed with the Palm Harbor GC and the PCTC taking a loss every year is the value they add to our community. Specifically the golf course, which when closed, ruined the property values of all the houses in the vicinity of the course. Since it has reopened, it has added much more value to that area than the $100k it losses every year. What is good for your neighbor (property value wise) is good for you.

  10. Seminole Pride says:

    It sounds pretty simple economics to me on determining the Break Even Point. As the TFC ( Total Fixed Cost) was determined each year, the Sales or Price to Operate was never adjusted or raised to determine a reasonable profit. You have got to raise the price of your product to maintain a return on your investment. Palm Harbor Golf Course is a big cost factor to maintain and operate. But price to play golf there was never maintained to offset these losses. We as taxpayers, and especially those that play golf should know this. You must continue a price increase of your product in order to BREAK EVEN.

  11. m&m says:

    Golf courses in general think by raising prices you raise your profit. What it does is drive away the golfers. The golf course have fixed overhead cost and if they reduce the cost to golf and increase the number playing they would increase the profit. Either way the overhead remains the same. Example if you charge $30 and have 75 players that’s $2250. If you charge $20 and have 150 players that’s $3000. Throw in food and drinks and add another 50% to the profit..

  12. Jack Howell says:

    Don’t know about how my fellow residents feel, but I am tired of seeing my tax money wasted by our city council. The city golf course and tennis courts are nothing more than a money pit! Unfortunately, low voter turnout prevents change so the wizards in the city council continue to spend, spend, spend on losing programs! Hey, Bill McGuire, you were a hot shot businessman at one time. Did you forget about profit and loss? Time to sell these facilities so we can stop tossing the tax money away. Let’s do some positive things with our tax money (LOL). I forgot, our city council does not have a clue how to do that! I’d tell them to look in the mirror, but they would only lie to themselves.

  13. Question: Re: The Federal Trade Commission of the United States – F.T.C. Docket C-28545 and the Federally ordered ‘ 15 Year Compliance Report ‘ with Exhibits A and Exhibits B.

    Does anyone know how to confirm if the Palm Coast Golf Courses early on a.k.a. ‘ The Four Sisters ‘ are the only Golf Courses Federally ORDERED to be built by the United States Government ?

    Thank you very much.

  14. buylocal says:

    I think the present procedures in place discouage play in the late afternoon to early evening. It is shut down completely by six o’clock, two hours before sunset.

  15. If it can be ascertained that the Palm Coasts’ Golf Courses are the only Golf Courses Federally ORDERED to be built in the United States then perhaps the STate of Florida Historic Preservation Offices Committee can ‘consider’ adding them to the STate of Florida Historic Golf Trail: http://www.floridahistoricgolftrail.com/

    If this happens perhaps other Areas of Heritage and History can be pursued to promote Palm Coasts’ Golf Courses.

    This is what we have achieved to date:

    May 7, 2014
    Mr. Geroge Edward Chuddy
    13 Clark Lane
    Palm Coast, FL 32137-8140
    Dear Mr. Chuddy:
    I am in receipt of your letter of April 26, 2014.
    In regard to golf courses that have been required to be built by the United States Federal Trade Commission ( or any other Federal Agency, the P.G.A. of America is not in receipt of any such records.
    Sincerely,
    Tom Brawley, Director
    Membership Services
    TB/kc
    ______________

    Perhaps newer Palm Coasters may want to see what other areas we are working on:
    http://palmcoasthistoricresources.tripod.com/id26.html

    Thank you very much for any help and information you can provide us. ‘Thank You’.

  16. Outsider says:

    I may play there once a year only because I barely play anymore. However, I will say the city has already made a large investment there and should protect it. You may just want to forget about making the place profitable, as the demise of hundreds of courses around the country has proven the economics of running a golf course may not produce a positive outcome, financially speaking. However, Palm Coast still has a large retiree population, who pay taxes, and many enjoy playing golf. They may not use the local parks, basketball courts, soccer fields and miles of biking trails that millions of their tax dollars are used to build and maintain, but are also forced to contribute to. Has anyone looked into the profitability of these and other public use facilities that the users are not charged a penny for? By definition I would say they are running at a loss, but no one seems to be complaining. If the course is losing 100k a year but is well played and managed, then don’t take the chance of switching management companies, because it only takes a short time of mismanagement to make a large investment necessary to bring a golf course back into shape. And for the record, I don’t work for or have any interest whatsoever in the current management company; I don’t even live in Palm Coast.

  17. snapperhead says:

    Why they don’t have twilight 9 hole “beer” leagues is beyond me. Back north where I played they were popular and were great late day revenue drivers for the food cart and beer and food in the restaurant after play was finished.

  18. Groot says:

    The big thing about this course, aside from the rudeness at the front desk, is the over crowding and slow play. This is the slowest play that I have ever experienced. It’s a problem at many courses in the area possibly due to the older population and tourists. Regardless, it is the slowest play and they are the rudest of all. There is no excuse for this to be subsidized by the city. This course does a lot of business. Where is the money going? We need to look at how the city is managing this contract and any other contracts with private entities to run city golf, tennis or any other public facilities. Believe me, there is a huge “opportunity” or risk of fraud, waste and abuse in these public/private collaborations. The city needs to look within and also at the folks at Kemper and Casper going forward. For now, I would suggest an investigation by the Florida Inspector General and FDLE to look for waste and or fraud. There is something very wrong here folks, very wrong.

  19. Floridiots says:

    @ BIG JOHN – Normally, I’d agree with you on not subsidizing public recreation, but where do you want to start? Fields at Indian Trails? Soccer complex off of US 1? Bike trails?

    The golf courses in Palm Coast were once part of a larger program to sell houses – move to Florida, live on a golf course. In my opinion, if the courses close and sell (Matanzas, Pine Lakes, Cypress Knoll, and yes, Palm Harbor, because Centex still owns the driving range – hello), then the surrounding neighborhoods are going to further destabilize.

    Why would I want to invest in a community that may approve apartments on what was once a golf course?

  20. Garfield & Palm Coast
    If we are fortunate to have the State of Florida Historic Preservation Committee , with a lot of luck, prayer, and hope, include Palm Coasts’ Golf Courses into the ‘ Historic Golf Trail ‘ then perhaps GARFIELD can also be used to help promote both Golf and Tennis for Palm Coast.
    Garfield and Palm Coast: http://palmcoastcorehomes.tripod.com/id61.html

    This is what PAWS, Inc., Owners of Garfield, has told us and what we have accomplished:
    ————-
    —– Original Message —–
    From: Cliff Hackney
    Subject: Palm Coast and Garfield

    Hi George,

    Everyone here at Paws Inc., Garfield’s home, certainly remembers our relationship with Palm Coast. Why don’t you get back to me when you have a more specific plan for how you would like to use Garfield with your 50th anniversary? ‘… If the city of Palm Coast would like to talk with us about using Garfield as a mascot, I’d be happy to discuss that with them…’

    Best Wishes

    Cliff Hackney

    Vice President, Paws Inc.

    cliff@pawsinc.com

    513-759-9003
    ——————
    IF this is considered perhaps Orange with Black Stripes Golf Carts, or Orange with Black Stripes ‘Cat Tails’ on the Golf Carts ( remember ‘ Tiger in your Tank Tail ‘? ) and other promo features can be used again for Palm Coasts’ Golf and Tennis.
    Thank you.

  21. T says:

    I do not play golf, but I do pay taxes in Palm Coast. I should NOT have to pay taxes to subsidize anyone else’s golf game, at all. Not one dime!

  22. Al Zeimers says:

    To many courses and not enough golfers equals not enough revenue. Equals operating at a loss. Dah McFly. Golf participantion have leveled and most likely will decline. This is a bussiness persons sport not a sport for McDee’s and Burger King workers which we are producing more of.

  23. rob says:

    This was a losing proposition from the word go.

    Across the US, golf course investors, owners and operators were trying to get out of the golf course business and along comes Palm Coast entering into an industry in its decline. The courses in the city were losing money. How did Palm Coast figure it was going to make money? The town manager was throwing around a number like 40,000 rounds of golf per year. No one on the town council had enough sense to analyze that number. Play drops by 50-60% in the hot summer months June, July and August. So the other 10 months would require 4000 rounds of golf per month to make up the short fall. I could go on but there appears that there was no one who was experienced in this type of investment involved in developing the business case.

    These folks were whistling Dixie and selling a snow job.

    Is Kemper ever going to pay back those million dollars?

    And this course probably can’t be sold because of land use deals that were negotiated by the city with the owner of the property.

    The tax payers are stuck supporting another one of the town councils ill advised forays.

    It was a small vocal minority that pushed the town council to engage in this folly. Much smaller than the group some councilors refer to with respect to the red light camera issue. Yet this small group was able to coerce the city into this money losing proposition and its continuing drag on the city finances. But a larger group of something like 11,000 can’t persuade the council to get out of the red light camera business.

  24. confidential says:

    Whoever here says that the golf course is well maintained is incorrect…maybe well enough for golfers but since the start of 2014 at least, all along Club House Drive and by the entrance in Cooper and Casper Lanes the weeds up to over 6 feet high took over the ornamental expensive ornamental grasses as they stop using the line trimming and or hand poling weeds around those ornamental grasses now many dying, stand alone palms, trees, mirtles and other ornamentals making up for a real eyesore, looking golf course to us all adjacent residents undermining the price of our homes. Also those court ponds are covered in algae and not looking not like attractive water holes for enjoyment and birds, but additional greens instead.
    Do we have access to the Kemper’s Management financials..? Otherwise how can we be sure and justify that we have to subsidize them at no less that 100,000/year more or less? Five years or more running the course to a loss, at least they should break even. Complaints of overcharge up to $38 to local men and ladies golfers promoting them to play elsewhere… is our taxpayers owned municipal court right, how come?
    An oversight volunteer committee of golfers men and ladies, landscaper experienced in golf courses, CPA and taxpayers residents should be created in order to promote contract compliance…because looks like has been none. Then transparency will help improvement and possibly a break even operation at least.

  25. GolfGuy says:

    So…the answer to all of the golf course problems is a cartoon cat? Was Clifford the Big Red Dog busy? Shows how out of touch some people are! What makes the courses in Palm Coast historic? Did historic figures play them? NO! Were they host to significant tournaments? NO! Were they the first Palmer, Player, or Nicklaus designs? NO! So, my question is…what makes these courses, built in the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s, historic? They are historic to Flagler County and Palm Coast, but not Florida. Palatka has a Donald Ross design…historic! Daytona has one too…historic! Palm Coast is not a “destination” like it semi once was! That…is history!

    • Seminole Pride says:

      @ Golf Guy, as a long time resident of Palm Coast since the mid 70’s, and I consider myself a young mid 50’s. person, who played there in the 70’s before the other golf courses were built.. Palm Harbor has had it’s share of memorable golf. Here are just a few Nancy Lopez was the touring professional here during her hey day on the LPGA tour, and lived in a condo on the golf course. She was the representative of Palm Coast and the original developer ITT. Also, Ms. Lopez would host a Pro Am during the winter, and bring in many of her fellow tour players from the LPGA tour for a two day Pro Am.Those that played here were Sandra Post, Jane Blalock, Susie Berning, and Marlene Floyd. Also their was a 2 person best ball challenge match with teams of Lee Trevino and Nancy Lopez, Raymond Floyd and Judy Rankn, and Gary Player and Laura Baugh that played at Palm Harbor with the winning team representing United States against a team from Great Briton at Sunny Dale, England. Also many North Florida PGA tour events were held there in the 80’s, with such future PGA tour plays as Jacksonville’s Mark MacCumber, Jim Thorpe, Calvin Peete, and Dewitt Weaver. Finally the King of Golf himself , the great Arnold Palmer played a number of rounds there while he was designing both the Pine Lakes and the former Matanzas Woods Golf course. They were free and open to the public. So I believe Palm Harbor Golf Club has it’s share of tradition and history. Oh, by the way Golf Guy, Palm Coast’s own Nancy Lopez and her partner Lee Trevino won the World Cup at the challenge in England.

  26. close the course says:

    I think the city of Palm Coast should change the golf course to soccer or lacrosse fields, as these are the only recreation activities that truly bring an economic impact to Flager County. Over 70 teams or more than 1000 people are paying for hotels and spending money in Flagler County during these tournaments. Way more than some crusty cheapskate duffer that’ll drive 20 miles to save $5 green fees.

  27. Groot says:

    When you drill down on this and get right down to what this is about, it’s about golf a little bit and a whole lot about betraying the public trust and not being good stewards of the public’s money. The city may have contracted this out but, the city still retains responsibility all the way down the contracting line. So, who is responsible for “The city is projecting a deficit of $225,000 this year”? The city employee who is managing this contract, Kemper and Mr Landon. Ultimately, Mr Landon is responsible for losing $225,000. Landon has an MPA and he knows this. He knows he is responsible. So, Mr Landon, how is it you let $225,000 of the public’s hard earned money go to waste?

    • Barbara Walters says:

      That is so true, he is the one who brought them in. and in the Tennis with Stanfied, and that place is not any better. He gave Stanfields wife a job, and lost three pros since then.
      That tennis court is a money pit.
      But on the other hand , you council and mayor all voted it back in when Landon asked you too !
      Send your money on something else.

  28. Lin says:

    If Kemper can not run this golf course in the black, what’s the point in retaining them?
    The bigger ? Is why the city continues to fund this losing business.
    This is a bad business decision. Golf courses are in oversupply for the amount of players. Courses are very expensive to maintain and
    I’m tired of my tax dollars being used to support this
    So many decisions by the council support the status quo. It’s not going to get better — fix this

  29. Pale says:

    I’d play there if I didn’t have to drive through a gauntlet of Red Light Cameras to get there!

    • Anonymous says:

      The right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing, I personally along with a few others had a meeting with Jim Landon the city manager, and the Mayor, here’s some info for all the golf courses, Pine Lakes was to be re-opened in 2006-2007 after a re-conditioning of the course, Mantanzas Woods was scheduled to be done second, however Jim Cullis the builder came along and it was decided Cypress Knolls was to be done second instead of 3rd,which the original plans called for Mantanzas to be done second, no wonder, Jim Landon lives in Cypress Knolls, no city officials wanted Mantanzas Woods to re-open, Builders are being catered to, of course they have the MONEY, Jim Landon stated Palm Harbor is making a profit, however they will not replace the staff, there is a lot of information available if anyone is interested, what you read in the papers or Go Toby web site, the facts are way off the truth.

  30. Barbara Walters says:

    this should be sold, and the tennis, our city has no business being in this business?

  31. Barbara Walters says:

    the Golf Guy statement is so true !

  32. GolfGuy says:

    The original order of renovations was…Pine Lakes, then Matanzas Woods, and Cypress Knoll last! This order was based on doing the “busy” course first and then working to the course that had the least amount of play. This was to be started in 2004 and end in 2008. However, based on the scope of work at each property the order was switched to Cypress, Pine, then Matanzas. It was budgeted for Cypress to be the cheapest/easiest to renovate. Wrong! Cypress went way over budget. To help ease the overages at Cypress, Pines renovation budget was cut. But, Pine ended up coming in way over budget (mostly in the clubhouse renovation). Plus the planned condos on the range at Pine never materialized. That leaves Matanzas…the most substantial renovation. It closed for the renovations, greens were killed, signs were removed, holes were to be rerouted across the canal and a subdivision built behind the range. BUT, there was no money left! The overages at Cypress and Pine used it all! Combine that with the real estate market tanking in 2007, you now have cow pasture. The previous Grand Club owner deemed it cheaper to keep the course closed than to reopen it! So there you have it…truth! Not rumor involving what section city officials live in!

  33. confidential says:

    Palm Coast Golf Course amenity should be preserved but at least at a break even management operation.
    An oversight volunteer committee is vital to monitor and advise a totally transparent on the day to day operation, maintenance, revenue and financials of the management as per dictated in the contract.

  34. Marley says:

    Did I read Santangelo said “we did not look at the financial budgets”??????? This is the Parks Director for the City?Going to take my blood pressure medication now…………………….

  35. Steven Nobile says:

    Again, it is a matter of objectives, goals and plans. In a down turn, as we have experienced, I can see the need for the city to preserve some attractions, like a golf course. The objective should be to turn it over to the private sector asap. The goals should be defined as to how long the city will use tax payer dollars to prop up the entity and a well defined plan as to how it will find a suitable buyer, maintain the entity in the meanwhile and how it will fund the project.

    All-in-all the city has no place in BUSINESS ventures using taxpayer dollars. Look at how well they have managed the Utility, it’s only $160 million in debt.

  36. Su says:

    As a potential new resident to PC, I truly believe word must get more to the voters and explain exactly what is going on with the governing committee of your city. They should not be in the business of running a business except running PC. The golf course can be privately owned and run and you can certainly at the time of sell write in provisions to keep for public use and not private. I don’t see the governing committee seeking business needed to thrive the city while maintaining homeowners cost low. I know there is a lot of red-tape to go thru but I also no if they stop looking into their personal agenda that can make the city thrive!

  37. @Seminole Pride –

    We would be honored if sometime you would stop in at 5 Clark Lane, 13 Clark Lane, 20 Casper Drive, etc. and see all of our accomplishments to date.

    For me, I am restoring the original Levitt I.T.T. ‘ African Safari ‘ Design in the ‘Santa Rosa’ Model I am a Steward of if you would like to see that. http://palmcoasthistoricresources.tripod.com/id26.html – The Needhams Stewards of ‘ The De Soto ‘ Levitt Model, Victor and his wife Stewards of ‘The Ponce De Leon ‘ Levitt Model, Nan & Rich Stewards of their Full Stucco Levitt ‘ Santa Rosa’ Model, etc.

    Would you be interested in working with us to preserve the Heritage and History of The Palm Coast Project ?

  38. Shark says:

    Just another one of Landon and Netts white elephants!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  39. Brian Barrington says:

    Of late, I have noticed surveyors doing some work at the Palm Harbor golf course. I understand that there are new units that will be under construction in the near future. What concerns me is the surveyor’s extensive work running through the course as if easements for property lines are being drawn for future development. Does the city own the course, and if so, what portion is owned by the contractor that is currently laying out plots throughout the course. If there are condo units being proposed on the course now, it will completely ruin the course layout and the practice range will be severely compromised, or eliminate it completely. I fear the contractor will also continue to clear cut some of the most beautiful oaks trees in the area, not to mention the impact on the habitats for so many indeginous animal (specifically, eagel and osprey) and plant life. When I asked about this activity at the Pro-shop (new club house Pro) I was told they had no idea what the contractor was doing there. Seems a bit odd that the management of the course doesn’t know what is going on there. I am sure they do, but are not sharing what is really goning on at the course. If the city does not own the property in total, there seems to be a big change afoot that only the people who hope to benefit from increased development in the area. Can you tell me what is going on at the course. I am a member of the Men’s club and fear the proverbial rug is ablout to pulled from under our feet. There are so many in the Palm Coast commmunity that will impacted by this outside influence should this type of development continue. Thank you.

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