Sparta Country Club asks county government for financial assistance

Posted By | August 8, 2019 12:06 pm

By Ron Moses

With membership dropping and debt rising, Sparta Country Club has asked the county for financial assistance.

Ben Holland and Betty Ruth Payne appeared before members of the county’s Steering Committee A, on Aug. 5, 2019 to provide information about the facility.

According to the representatives, Sparta Country Club is looking to convert the club pool to salt water to cut costs.

“I think they should sign it over to the county and make it a part of parks and recreation and be done with it,” said Roger Mason, county commissioner.

The budget committee had stated too much debt would come with the club if it was purchased by the county. According to officials, the club is in debt upwards of $170,000, and any transfer of ownership would transfer the debt as well. The country club representatives told the steering committee they believed the benefits of the county keeping them afloat were in the form of economic developments like recruiting businesses, the residents that live in the area, and the use of the country club by the school’s golf team.

Reportedly, the club could lose $25,000 this year.

“They need to go back onto their well pump to water their greens,” said county commissioner and committee member Dillard Quick. “All they pay is electricity to get it out of the well pump. They are paying what you are paying out of the faucet to drink to put on the greens.”

County Executive Denny Wayne Robinson agreed.

“I don’t want to lose them, by any means,” said Robinson. “But, I wouldn’t want to just give them money without any sort of representation on their part to help with making sure they use what they have the best they can.”

In other business, Steering Committee B heard from a company named SouthBuild on the design and construction management of a new county jail.

Also discussed and approved was a resolution to enter into a contract with Quality Correctional Health Care to handle inmate healthcare. According to documents provided, “The annualized amount to be paid by the county to QCHC under this agreement is to be $336,000. The county will make monthly payments of $28,000 …”

The matter will now move to a full county commission vote.

Committee B was also updated on neglected care, including garbage on properties and the County Powers Act. The committee agreed to look into certain legal matters about adopting the County Powers Act and the way in which the county should regulate before moving forward with any action. If action is taken, the county would regulate anything from height of grass to cars on property.

Steering Committee A and Steering Committee B both meet at 5:30 p.m., the first Monday of each month, at the courthouse.

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