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More green to play golf?

Manteca council ponders golf green fee increases

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More green to play golf?

Manteca golf course green fees may increase Jan. 1.

Bulletin fie photos/


POSTED December 14, 2017 1:14 a.m.

While Stockton is considering converting one of its two municipal golf courses into a sports complex and selling the other to a developer to allow the building of as many of 1,000 more homes, Manteca elected leaders Tuesday are being asked to consider a green fee increase designed to keep the Union Road course viable.
A proposed green hike — the first since nominal increases went into effect in November 2015 and July 2016 after a 14 year stretch of no fee increases — is designed to help the city stay on top of maintenance and operation costs as well as build up funds to tackle identified capital improvements.
The fee  hikes as proposed would keep Manteca competitive with golf courses in the region with most fees still being lower in Manteca. When it comes to what it costs an actual Manteca resident to play on the Union Road course as opposed to the 10 other courses in the region, the proposed 18-hole weekday fee of $22 — up from the current $19 — would be lower than all other courses except for Lockeford, Old River, and Dryden. For a Manteca resident playing in town as opposed to the other 10 courses, weekend play of $25 — up from the current $22 — is the same as three other courses (Lockeford, Old River in Tracy, and Van Buskirk) and lower than seven others.
If the council approves the rate hikes they will go into effect Jan. 1. It is projected the hikes have the potential of generating up to $108,849 in additional revenues over 2017 assuming the number of rounds played stays unchanged.
Among the changes besides actual rates are proposals to:
ureduce the minimum age for senior rates from 62 to 60. The senior rate applies Monday through Friday.
uadd a “replay special” that provides golfers with a  discounted round of golf play for $10 after paying the regular green fee for one round of golf. It is valid only on the same day as the first round is played and would be available seven days a week.
The proposed fee changes are as follows:
18-hole weekday residential fee would go from $19 to $22.
18-hole weekday non-resident fee would go from $22 to $26.
9-hole weekday fee would stay at $16.
Junior weekday fee would stay at $12.
Twilight Weekday fee would go from $16 to $18.
Super Twilight Weekday fee would go from $9 to $13.
A senior rate would be put in place for Monday through Friday at $20.
Active military weekday fee would go from $10 to $15.
18-hole weekend residential fee would go from $22 to $25.
18-hole weekend non-resident fee would go from $29 to $33.
9-hole weekend fee would go from $17 to $18..
Junior weekend fee would go from $12 to $14.
Twilight Weekend fee would go from $17 to $19.
Super Twilight Weekend fee would go from $11 to $15.
Active military weekend fee would go from $12 to $17.
Adult resident monthly pass pay would go from $85 to $99.
Adult non-resident monthly pass play would go from $98 to $119.
Senior resident monthly pass pay would go from $70 to $84.
Senior non-resident monthly pass play would go from $88 to $99.
Junior monthly pass play would go from $40 to $50.
Disability resident monthly pass pay would go from $70 to $84.
Disability non-resident monthly pass play would go from $88 to $99.
Municipal staff and the golf pros — DeBenedetti Golf Shop Inc. —  have been working together since Aug. 1  to make general improvements to the golf course and improve the overall golfing experience.  The pro shop has been repainted, range mats have been replaced, new golf carts have been leased, a new Junior Golf program that is supported by the Northern California Golf Association is going to be implemented, new hole assignments and score cards have been implemented to assist with the flow and timing of the golf game, and new promotional specials advertised. The DeBenedettis have also started to develop a new, user-friendly website that clearly brands and markets the golf course.  
The green fees collected from golfers pay for course maintenance and upkeep. The city’s general fund supports the golf course to the tune of $333,000 a year. That covers course management as well as a historic $155,000 underwriting of junior and senior play at reduced rates. The course management charges are similar to those assigned for staff time to oversee parks within Manteca.
Manteca is in much better shape than Stockton that is considering converting Van Burskirk from a golf course to a regional sports complex and selling Swenson to allow up to 1,000 new homes to be built.
The two courses are  costing Stockton $850,000 a year in general fund support or $425,000 each compared to Manteca’s cost of $333,000.
The real big difference is course conditions. Stockton estimated it needs to spend $20 million to bring the two courses up to par with others in the region. Manteca has some $3.47 million worth of capital improvement projects that have been identified by staff as being needed and/or are a “wish list” of sorts over the next 10 years. The biggest chunk is $1.8 million needed for the clubhouse that is nearing 30 years in age.
The new proposed fees are designed to tackle the $3.47 million worth of improvements that are roughly a third of what each Stockton course needs or a sixth if you take the clubhouse out of the equation.
The Manteca City Council meets at 7 p.m. on Tuesday at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St.

To contact Dennis Wyatt, email dwyatt@mantecabulletin.com

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