The Meridian City Council recently approved a contract with Kemper Sports Management to run the Lakeview Golf Club.
The deal with KSM, a golf course management company, stipulates the city pay $9,000 in monthly fees for the firm to handle budgeting, employment and other day-to-day tasks, according to the agreement. The city will receive any revenue.
A budget amendment allocating up to $700,000 to run the course garnered unanimous approval from council.
“It’s our goal to offset this with revenue,” said Meridian Parks Superintendent Mike Barton.
Though the council warned in August the course may not draw revenue immediately, members voiced excitement at their Oct. 27 meeting.
“This is something to celebrate and we’re excited about it,” Councilman Joe Borton said.
He continued that some area residents are concerned about the city’s dealings with KSM.
“These are boots on the ground folk who care about the course and are kind of side by side with the city to make it successful,” he said, suggesting the city hold a public event to explain the new partnership.
The West Ada Recreation District will hold initial control of the course, which sits on city-owned land. The district closed a deal in August with Lakeview Investors to take over the ownership group’s lease of the city of land the course lies on. The district will fund around $60,000 upgrades to the course — including some to its irrigation system — before transferring control to the city in September 2023, according to the leasing agreement.
Still in the early stages, the city is yet to decide how often the council will discuss management of the course. Councilwoman Liz Strader suggested discussing costs and revenue at least twice a year, often enough to keep an eye on operations but infrequent enough to let seasonal shifts in the course’s revenue to balance out.
Other details of course management remain up in the air, as the city and recreation district take over.
“There will be this ongoing dialogue as we find long-term solutions for the golf course,” said Mayor Robert Simison.