To the Editor,
I feel compelled to write this letter in response to the recent article concerning the Towns decision to close Colonial Acres Golf Course. I did return a voice message left on my home telephone by the writer of the article. However, he said the article was already written and that he did not need to speak with me.
While I was sad to hear the news that the golf course is being closed, I was also angered by the statements made by former golf course superintendent Pat Blum who blamed me and my company, Audubon Landscape Services for the course closing. This is simply not true.
While I signed a landscape management contract with Dale Ezyk Golf, I can also say that there was not one year of our work at Colonial Acres when the terms of the contract was adhered too. This was not because Dale Ezyk didn’t care what the course looked like; it was because he simply did not generate enough income from golfers to pay the bills. So, instead of paying my company to cut the fairways for example, or trim weeds, Dale kept reducing the work and stated that he would do certain work himself, because he did not have the money to pay us to do the work for him.
While the contact between Dale Ezyk Golf and my company required that Colonial Acres provide the necessary equipment to manage the course, that never happened. This is because the course equipment was sub-standard or broken completely. On many occasions I volunteered to fix broken course equipment. However, on most occasions we used equipment owned by Audubon Landscape Services to manage the course. A significant amount of time, Dale didn’t have enough money to purchase fuel for the equipment, so I spent hundreds of dollars on fuel to run mowers in order to try and keep the course presentable. I was never reimbursed for this expense.
The bottom line is that no business, including Dale Ezyk Golf, LLC or Audubon Landscape Services, LLC can remain in business if there is not enough income to pay the bills and make a profit. Although both Dale and I contributed hundreds of hours and hundreds of dollars to the effort of maintaining Colonial Acres Golf Course it simply did not work.
Evidently the Town had previously decided that subsidizing the golf course with tax dollars and not focusing on making a profit was an acceptable approach. Businesses however can not use tax dollars to subsidize operating loss. The former golf course superintendent might have known something about turfgrass management, but he clearly knows nothing about the business of managing a golf course in a financially successful way. Although we inherited non-working course management equipment, we also inherited many gallons of previously purchased and unneeded pesticide products that were stored in the maintenance building. While Blum was focused on winning environmental awards, he was doing this all the while the course was losing money every year.
Audubon Landscape Services, LLC