As promised, here are the recent developments of the Iron Eagle golf course dilemma.
Since the end of September 2010, green fees receipts are down from $141,844 to $120,704 in 2012, a total loss of $21,140.
Total operating expenditures have increased since 2010 from $477,223 to $522,749. Meanwhile, the net operating income (loss) has increased from $157,194 to $220,651 during that time.
And our ex-mayor and four city council people said change of management at the course would be good for the city. I think not.
Since taking over the operation five months ago, Landscape golf group has cost the city and taxpayers boo coo bucks. With the contract the ex-mayor signed with Landscape and backing of four city council members for the next five years, they have done the city and taxpayers a grave injustice. In the contract, the city paid $5,000 a month to Landscape, but even though the employees at Iron Eagle are not city employees, the city still pays their wages. How it works is in the contract. Landscape pays their employees and then submits a bill to the city, which in turn pays Landscape. What a deal (great) for Landscape. Now Landscape wants the city to pay for their employeesí health insurance, even though theyíre not employed by the city.
Kaschke was still mayor when Landscape submitted their proposed budget for 2013, with a rise of 24% over last year. Can you imagine if the previous management had submitted a 24% increase? What would the mayor and council have said? But the ex-mayor and council approved the 2013 budget for Landscape.
Landscapeís golf company just writes checks for whatever they want and submits the bill to the city and the city (taxpayers) have to pay for it, itís in the contract. Thus, the $220,000 increase in total operating costs. Iím still appalled that three city employees lost their jobs, not because of incompetency or being late all the time or not doing their jobs but because the ex-mayor and four city council members Ė McNea, Steinbeck, Carmen and Pederson -- did the ole buddy thing. You wash my hands; Iíll wash yours. The three employees were fired from their jobs because of no reason whatsoever. They did a great job with the budget they were given to work with. Now, Landscape has an unlimited budget for the next five years. These people were told it was not a good deal for the city, but they did it anyways.
Hang on taxpayers, because your property taxes are going up. Thanks all of you who were involved in this corruption of city government, you know who you are. Also, if the state inheritance tax is gone, our taxes are sure to rise. Itís either cut spending or raise taxes, and you know what will happen there.
So, to the citizens of North Platte, I donít care if you were for or against the golf course, itís there and always will be there. We just all need to voice our minds to our elected officials so this kind of crap doesnít happen again.
By Jon Higgins, North Platte