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City wants golf pro to make more
Contract designed to generate money for Manteca
A golfer plays at the Manteca course. - photo by HIME ROMERO

Manteca’s leaders want to see golf pro Alan Thomas make a lot more money.

And the reason they do is to improve the municipal golf course’s bottom line.

The City Council has finalized a deal with Thomas that would give the golf pro 90 percent of everything he generates above $814,044 a year in green fees during this year, 2014 and 2015. The city would receive the other 10 percent.

It is the flip of what happens with the first $814,044 in green fees where the city receives 90 percent and the golf pro 10 percent. The $814,044 represents what the course generated in green fees during 2012. Green fee revenue has been dropping for the last several years at the Manteca course.

The contract modification is in response to declining rounds at the golf course. Thomas attributes it to increased competition in the region as private clubs become more aggressive going after players.

Thomas wants to employ some of the same tactics including marketing and making the actual rounds go smoother and faster. But in order to do that, he needs money to hire additional staff.

The deal as negotiated requires Thomas to shoulder all of the risk in hiring additional staff. But if he succeeds, he’ll be rewarded with the lion’s share of increased revenues.

All of the council except for Mayor Willie Weatherford was on board for the enticement package.

Weatherford was leery of using revenue as the yardstick for increased play Instead, he wants the city to conduct an audit of actual rounds played. While the city is constantly auditing money that Thomas takes in they haven’t audited rounds played for over a decade.

The mayor believes without a round audit that the possibility exists the actual base the new revenue split is being made with Thomas is too low. One way that could happen is if free rounds are converted into paid rounds. The existing contract with Thomas spells out who he can allow to play free and under what circumstances but it doesn’t require him to allow free rounds.