Monday, February 2, 2009
I gotta start arriving early for the Select Board meetings! Last week, knowing the July 4’th Parade issue was a 7:40 PM timed item, I snuck in around 7:30 PM.
And I even had someone tape the entire meeting starting at 6:30 pm and put it on a DVD so I could create the clip I posted last week. But even that did not record the little joke of the town manager testing his microphone (must have picket it up from President Reagan) about Amherst “buying another golf course.”
Of course the not so funny thing is he managed to get ink in both the crusty Bulletin and today’s highly read ‘Cries and Whispers’ column in the Springfield Republican. And both of them fell for the argument (only made by Shaffer) that the golf course has become more successful.
Currently Cherry Hill year-to-date revenue stand at an anemic $110,000. Dan Engstrom, who ran the course for twenty years until mysteriously disappearing almost two years ago, told the Select Board the easy way to estimate an entire year’s revenues is simply double the amount at Fall closing, thus a total intake of $220,000.
This year (FY09) Cherry Hill has an operation budget of $208,000 a brand new capital item costing $22,000 (lawn mower) and employee benefits and insurance hidden in another budget of $25,000. So just to break even the golf business needs to intake $255,000.
And that of course does not include the $30,000 guaranteed opportunity income from Niblick Management’s privatization offer, hastily rejected by the Town Mangler.
I even question if they will hit $220,000 because Engstrom's formulae relied on the roughly 180 to 200 Season Pass holders renewing their memberships in April and May. Rather than shell out $500 for an annual membership many of these folks may cut back and just pay the $15 day rate here and there.
So a loss of $25,000 (assuming they do hit $220,000 this year ) when you could have had a guaranteed $30,000 is...well, nothing to joke about.