Common Council** Priorities: Golf First, Everything Else Last

From Mohawk Valley COmpass:

According to the agenda for the June 16 Common Council meeting which was distributed by the City Clerk’s office yesterday, Alderman Ed Russo has sponsored an ordinance which would completely eliminate chapter 28 of the city code. That chapter is what created and defined the powers and duties of the Golf Course Commission.

There is no question that the Council’s ostensible concern for the Charter extends as far as the first tee. To get their way at the golf course — which without question runs counter to the public interests of city residents– the Council will brazenly proceed with or without the Charter and their feigned concern as ‘keepers of the Charter’ and the ‘will of the people’ as reflected in the Charter. What rubbish.

At first, I could honestly care less about extending a perk to golfers — there are way more important things to address.

But when you get fed constant narratives from the Council and golfers on the ‘sanctity’ of the Charter, on how city residents ‘pay nothing’ for the course, how ‘no other golf course charges trail fees’ , how the Council ‘researched’ trail fees, how the Council is ‘fiscally responsible’ and ‘running things like a business’– all demonstrably false narratives at that– I just can’t take it. Couple that with their attitude that anyone who does not play golf should have no say in the administration of the course and that pushes me over the top.

I’ve always supported the golf course as a public good and a positive for the city– it  truly is a wonderful asset; but the Council has now started to convince me that the course is a liability– it drains energy and political capital from more important things. And seems to elevate the interests of a select few well above the interests of the many, many of them golfers themselves.

The Council is not helping golfers, it’s turning public opinion — mine at least– against them and ultimately hurting the course and golfers in the long run.

** When I say Council, I am not referring to Ms. Beekman who seems measured and considered in her decision and policy making and therefore not subject to my criticism.


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