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City of Lansing, Michigan, may sell its only municipal golf course

City of Lansing, Michigan, may sell its only municipal golf course

LANSING, Mich. — City Council members are expected to vote Monday on whether to start the process of selling the city’s only municipal golf course, convention center and minor league baseball stadium.

It will likely fail, said Peter Spadafore, the council member who is proposing the resolution. He won’t vote for it.

Spadafore said he made the proposal because council members have spent years complaining about the city’s funding of the Lansing Entertainment and Public Facilities Authority, the management company hired by the city to operate Groesbeck Golf Course, the Lansing Center and the Lansing Lugnuts’ Jackson Field.

In an interview Friday, Spadafore said the city funds the three programs because they help to drive tourism, business and investment in Lansing. Budget documents show a 2023-2024 “operating subsidy” total of about $2 million for the properties.

The city provided about $1.3 million to the Lansing Center this year, $612,381 to Jackson Field and $96,383 to Groesbeck. For the upcoming year’s $165.1 million general fund budget that council will vote on Monday, the subsidies amount to about $1.5 million, with $78,000 of that for the golf course.

“I also do not accept the premise that this is a subsidy, because we run programs across the city that are good for our community like our community centers and pools and parks programs,” Spadafore said. “We don’t make money on those but that’s what a government does.”

Other city officials, including Mayor Andy Schor, Council President Jeremy Garza, and Councilmember Ryan Kost, also are opposed to selling the well-known city properties.

Schor said, in a statement, that he is firmly opposed to selling any of these three city assets.

“They are a valuable part of providing a vibrant and thriving community, bringing in residents and visitors from across the state,” he said. “I’m proud that the City of Lansing can offer incredible, diverse amenities like the Groesbeck Golf Course. And I am happy that the amenities we have added over the last few years have increased the sustainability of this course.”

LEPFA did not respond to the State Journal‘s requests for comment. Scott Keith, the longtime director of LEPFA resigned earlier this year and said at the time that a city proposal to reduce LEPFA’s city funding by $700,000 had nothing to do with his decision to resign. The drop, he said, was a return to pre-pandemic levels of less reliance on the city.

Kost, a council…


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