May 18 2017 03:13 PM

Bernero vetoes proposal to shift golf course to LEPFA

THURSDAY. May 18 — Lansing Virg Bernero vetoed today City Council’s decision to prevent him from shifting control of Groesbeck Golf Course from the parks department to the Lansing Entertainment and Public Affairs Authority.

The Council barred the move Monday on a 5-2 vote. It needs six votes to overcome the veto, which is has two weeks to carry out. Councilwomen Judi Brown Clarke and Tina Houghton backed it. Council President Patricia Spitzley was absent.

Bernero said the move is meant to save taxpayers money and keep the sole remaining municipal golf course in the city open. Right now, the course operates using about $600,000 in parks millage money — a quarter of the annual take on the millage. That, Bernero said, results in a $24 subsidy for every person who uses the golf course.

“I know what we are doing now is not working,” he said. “I am willing to try something new.”

Kathie Dunbar, a councilwoman at-large who usually backs Bernero, said she voted against his plan because she wanted more information.

“I want to see the business case for moving it,” she texted Tuesday, “with expense and revenue projections (in numbers, not words) and how will it affect the park millage subsidy over time.”

Spitzley was not immediately available to ask if she planned on calling a special meeting to seek an override.

Carol Wood, who presided over the meeting in Spitzley’s stead, said the veto was expected.