Golf Course Expects to be Profitable in 2014

By Sue Moore

Frozen water pipes have been keeping the Vicksburg Village public works guys busy in February, thawing houses out, particularly in the older part of town, Ken Schippers reported to the Village Council.

He urged residents to keep a faucet running, at least at a trickle the size of a toothpick or a pencil as the frost is seeping further in the ground than he has witnessed it in a long time.  “It’s down about 58 inches in places when it’s usually no further than 39-48 inches.  “I’d rather be mowing grass,” Schippers joked, instead the DPW is doing its best to keep ahead with snow plowing.

Village Snow Plowing Procedures
Village Snow Plowing Procedures: The major streets are plowed first, then local streets. Once those are reasonably clear, the Department of Public Works crew proceeds to the housing plats, parking lots and finally the sidewalks. They are running out of places to put the snow, Ken Schippers, head of the DPW reported to the Village Council.

On the positive side, Angels Crossing golf course manager Jeff Rohrstaff is eagerly awaiting the start of the season.  He sold 154 year-long guest passes at a recent conference, more than ever before, he said.  Plus, he now has a business plan in place that has been facilitated by two consultants.  They believe the course can be profitable this year to the tune of $49,000 if all goes well.

He believes he will have an increase in activity due to the following action items:

  1. The event tent will get electric service for the first time.  It is projected to add $12,243 with five new events scheduled.  Total cost for improvements will be $4,000.
  2. The beverage cart will have consistent hours of operations from May to August.  The cost is $4,600 with revenue projected at $12,900.
  3. An outdoor grill will be purchased and located on the east side of the kitchen.  This will allow additional menu items and specials at a total cost of $1,000.
  4. The course will switch to nine minute intervals between tee times from the current 10 minutes.  This would add $10,850 additional revenue, adding 447 starts to a normal year.  He would be adding a course ranger at an additional cost of $2,379.

Projected revenues are $842,050, expenses $793,005. The course lost $19,000 in 2013 and $79,000 in 2012.  The difference was compensated by moving Brownfield funds in to offset the deficit.

President of the Village, Bill Adams said he is eagerly anticipating the time when bonds can be sold to refinance the Village’s current debt.  The resolution of intent to bond went out in June/July for $600,000 for infrastructure at the golf course’s roads and parking lots, and $600,000 for water and sewer improvements.  In the meantime, the Village is awaiting the deadline on the referendum period until March 17, when it can safely refinance the existing debt of $3.5 million.  This will add a total debt for the Village of $4.7 million, but reduce the payments to about the same as they are now, Adams stated.

Village Clerk, Tracy Locey reported that four applications had been received from citizens interested in serving on the Council until the election in November.  They are James Earl, Carl Keller, Bill Parsons and Loren Tanner.  Interviews for the trustee position will took place on Feb. 25 and the appointment will be made at the regular council meeting on March 3.

AEP has notified the village that it will be trimming trees under power lines and removing some on Washington, Main, Michigan and Park streets among others, Schippers reported.

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