After the Election of Joe Winfield as Mayor and Councilmembers Melanie Barrett, Joyce Jones-Ivey and Josh Nicolson, the new members of the Council held a majority. As a result, the future of the Town-owned golf courses had a cloud placed over it, yet again. The former Mayor and Council had begun to implement a process to bond for the capital improvements required to ensure the success of the golf courses and Community Center going forward. However, the new Mayor and Councilmembers had campaigned on a platform that included abandoning the initiative to issue bonds for such capital improvements and even questioned whether the thirty-six holes of golf at the Community Center owned by the Town should continue to exist.
Almost immediately after the new Mayor and Council were elected, the initiative to issue bonds for the golf course and Community Center capital improvements, which had been made a part of the 2018-2019 fiscal year budget, was put on hold by the Town Manager, Mary Jacobs, to allow the new Mayor and Council to determine the course of action they would like to pursue regarding the issue. It would, ultimately, be removed from the budget.
The process to make a decision regarding the retention of the golf courses, and whether or how any necessary capital improvements at the property would be accomplished, would span some fifteen months from the August 2018 election of the new Mayor and Councilmembers. It would consume some seven Regular and Special Council meetings and Study Sessions, four meetings of a newly constituted Budget and Finance Commission expressly dedicated to the golf course issue, and the direct engagement of over an estimated one thousand Town residents.
Not until November 20, 2019, would the Mayor and Council finally decide to retain the thirty-six holes of golf at the Community Center, the conditions under which that would occur, and the process for funding the facility and the capital improvement necessary for the success of the facility. The process for getting to that point, however, was long, complicated and laborious. [Link to the Entire History of the Decision to Retain Thirty-Six Holes of Golf]