The future of Whispering Pines Golf Course up for discussion
Thu, 16 Jan 2014 00:23:46 GMT —
Whispering Pines Golf Course is the one and only Myrtle Beach Golf Course that's owned by the city, and it's also costing taxpayers a lot of money.
"Operating cost are in the neighborhood of $1.3 million a year. Our revenue has been a little over a million dollars a year. So in the last five years, we've averaged probably a loss of $250,000 per year," said Ron Andrews, assistant City Manager.
The land used to belong to the federal government as part of the former Air Force Base.
Andrews says back when the land was handed over to the city, there were two restrictions.
"One, is that the property would remain in the city's name. The city cannot convey the property to somebody else. Then secondly, that the property had to be used for recreational purposes," said Andrews.
NewsChannel 15 asked why Whispering Pines is losing money.
Myrtle Beach City Council members say it just can't compete with other area golf courses.
"I'm in favor of closing the golf course, not tomorrow necessarily, but moving in that direction over the next few months," said Susan Grissom Means, Myrtle Beach City Council member.
The city is rethinking how to use the 200 acres.
They say bringing in more recreation and fields won't completely solve the problem, but will help lower the city's costs.
"Even tennis facilities, swimming pools and auditoriums, those kind of public facilities seldomly find them breaking even. They always require some subsidy to operate," said Andrews.
It's up in the air whether they will keep part of the golf course, or take it out completely.
City Council meets on January 28, and will further discuss the options.