City of Worthington urged to consider GreatLIFE bid on local golf course – The Globe
WORTHINGTON — A proposal that the GreatLIFE golf course and facilities be turned over to the City of Worthington was discussed at a special meeting of Worthington City Council on Wednesday.
The proposed agreement, submitted by Tom Walsh, Sr. of GreatLIFE, is dependent on GreatLIFE’s continued operation, maintenance and management of the facility, as well as the retention of all facility equipment . The property is approximately 118 acres and includes an 18-hole golf course, clubhouse, restaurant, fitness center, pool, maintenance building, and cart building.
Under the agreement, the city would become responsible for all improvements necessary to comply with ADA requirements, all costs and expenses associated with facility capital improvements, maintaining an adequate water supply irrigated from Lake Okabena and cover the cost of everything needed. chemicals and fertilizers used in the upkeep of golf courses – requirements that have raised concerns among several city council members about the potential cost of the deal.
“I would never deny amenity benefits to a community,” Councilman Chad Cummings said, “but this town also got out of the golf course game…because it wasn’t profitable.”
In its offer, GreatLIFE would keep 50% of the first $100,000 in annual net profit and 50% of the first $100,000 in annual cash flow paid to the city. Thereafter, Great Life would retain all excess cash flow. The initial term of operations appointment is three years with mutual one-year renewal options thereafter.
City attorney Jeff Flynn said Walsh’s biggest concern appeared to be irrigation of the golf course, something he hoped to mediate with the riparian rights awarded to the city through their property along Lake Okabena.
Councilor Amy Ernst asked whether or not it would be possible to assign some of these rights to the golf course, without the city assuming responsibility for the facility.
Although no official action was taken at the meeting, the council asked Flynn to review state laws regarding water use and said no action would be taken by the city regarding the proposal without advice from council.