City council now looking at eliminating free lifetime golf benefits
April 08, 2013, 4:00 pm by James Walker
The Burnet City Council appears to have gotten the message delivered by a room full of residents at a lively meeting last week to discuss a proposal to award themselves free lifetime golf at the city-owned Delaware Springs Golf Course.
The council is supposed to hear the second and final reading of the proposed ordinance at its Tuesday night meeting, but it has been radically altered since the first reading and the resulting public uproar.
According to the agenda for Tuesday night’s meeting, Mayor Gary Wideman directed City Manager David Vaughn to eliminate all lifetime memberships and only provide a 20 per cent discount for council members during their term of office.
The council’s March 5 approval of the first reading of the proposed city ordinance amendment giving them lifetime free membership at Delaware Springs surprised citizens, said Delaware Springs resident Pat McAleer, who was one of more than 100 citizens who showed up at the Burnet Community Center for last Wednesday’s council workshop session on the issue.
"There’s a perception problem here,” McAleer said. "You are starting to act like Washington, D. C. folks.”
"Taxpayers should not be subsidizing recreation. It’s not fair to the taxpayers,” said Craig Lindholm, a resident of the Ranch at Delaware Springs subdivision, which borders Delaware Springs.
Council members appeared to be taken aback by the intensity of the opposition to the free golf proposal.
"It’s been a pretty trying week for me over something that I view as less than a gnat on a dog’s rear end,” Wideman told the crowd after expressing his unhappiness about "hurtful and defaming things” that have been said about him and his family.
"I think we all deserve a little more respect,” Wideman said.
For the complete story, see Wednesday's Burnet Bulletin.
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