The City of Aurora has submitted their outline to the Ohio EPA to provide justification for the funding of the purchase of the Aurora Golf Club. Signed by the Mayor of Aurora, Lynn McGill, the document outlines the funding request of $4.76 Million to purchase then close the Aurora Golf Club in the name of ‘water restoration’.
According Aurora resident George Heisler, there are a number of ‘whoppers’ — outright false statements — made within the signed and attested document.
“The document is so full of BS that I cannot believe they can sleep at night,” says Heisler. “But I know the type: they just drink the Kool Aid and sleep like babies.”
Heisler says two big lies are incredibly easy to spot.
1) Quoting the document: “Of particular importance is that in May 2011, the owners secured a commercial rezoning of a portion of the property and are currently making plans for the closure of the golf course clubhouse area for redevelopment. As such, WRRSP funding will not be providing the reason for the owners to shutter the operations. The economic realities of three 18-hole golf courses in Aurora, operating within two miles of each other, are simply no longer feasible. The current owners purchased the property with full intention to shut it down for a large scale redevelopment.”
Heisler: The course is packed with paying customers and no one is talking to the owner to buy the land — other than the Ohio EPA. Why would any businessman close a money-making operation unless some entity was misguided enough to overpay for the land? Only the Ohio EPA would be a good fit for that, certainly not a private developer.
The Aurora Advocate recently posted a story by writer Susan Jenor saying that the golf course was busy with outings and open play, and that the conditions are as good as ever — even with the confusion of whether or not the course will exist past 2012.
2) Quoting the document: “The topography of the site is flat to gently rolling. The land has been significantly altered for its current use as an 18-hole golf course. A topographic map of the property is included in Exhibit A and photographs of the property are included within Exhibit B.”
Heisler: Nonsense. The golf course was built during 1920’s with the front nine opening in 1925; the back nine took until 1930 to open. The course was built in 1925-30 so there were no massive earth movers to do any ‘changing of the land’. I talked with the current ground superintendent and he stated clearly that part of the beauty of the course is that the land was never changed. None of the land was significantly altered, and the purchase of the land by the Ohio EPA won’t change that fact — or help water quality since they have no plan to make any future changes.
The use of taxpayer dollars to significantly overpay for this golf course property and the subsequent shuttering of a going private business by a government agency is not a done deal yet. But to prevent it will take a concerted effort from Northeast Ohio residents to shine a light on the absurdity of the situation.
Contact Governor John Kasich and tell him this is not what Ohio’s government should be doing with taxpayer dollars. Write the Plain Dealer so everyone in Northeast Ohio knows how the Ohio EPA is working to close businesses and cost people their jobs for what amounts to no proven benefit to water quality.
Citizens have to make noise soon or the Aurora mayor, city council and the Ohio EPA will get their way…