City of Phoenix golf courses face budget deficit

September 05, 2012

Phoenix’s city golf courses are in a serious financial hole, according to a new study. There are several possible solutions, and the city is looking for the public’s input. 

Papago Golf Course Papago Golf Course in Phoenix, one of the city's eight municipal courses. (Photo courtesy City of Phoenix)

The city’s golf program is designed to be self-sustaining. But a new report from Phoenix’s Budget and Research Department paints a grim picture.

Over the last 20 years, there’s been a 40 percent increase in the number of golf courses around the Valley. But supply of golf courses well exceeds demand. Nationwide, the number of golfers has dropped over the last decade, and the recession took its toll as well.

Phoenix Golf’s current budget deficit sits at nearly $15 million dollars -- $2.5 million of that from the 2011-2012 fiscal year alone. The study of the golf program proposes a few different options, including turning some city courses into parks, outsourcing maintenance, and seasonal or permanent closures.

The city has planned five public meetings to present information from the report and take public comments and questions. Click here for more information.

Updated 9-5-12 10:45 a.m.

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