The Orangetown Board unanimously voted to keep most of the fees to play the town's two golf course, Blue Hill and Broadacres, the same for 2013 as they were in 2012 at Tuesday's meeting.
Some fees were reduced with the hope of drawing more players. The fee for youth residents will drop from $30 to $20 and the Associate fee decreases from $100 to $95. There will also now be a Youth Associate permit available for $30.
Orangetown resident Carol Silverstein, a former member of the town's golf committee, argued that the fees should be increased.
"This is a mistake," Silverstein said. "I understand the thinking is if you keep the rates neutral, it will encourage people to come. The point of the matter is there isn't another golf course you can play at these rates. The rates are too low for residents.
"There is a select group on the (golf) committee who want everything to remain the same. They want their tee times and their rates to remain the same. That negates the interests of the town. The courses are losing money. Keeping the rates this way won't change that."
Members of the town council pointed out that the rates at Blue Hill and Broadacres are comparable to other courses nearby.
"One of the things (Parks and Recreation Department Director) Aric (Gorton) gave us information on was the fees of the local courses around here," Councilman Denis Troy said. "Some of our fees are higher. Some are lower. It's in the ballpark of Patriot Hills, Spook Rock and Rotella."
Troy said that past experience has shown that the number of rounds played will go down as prices go up. To me, the rates are where they should be."
The board is still looking into other options, such as finding someone to take over Broadacres. Supervisor Andy Stewart said he hopes to have a RFP (Request for Proposal) ready for next week's workshop.
Among other items the board addressed Tuesday:
- Approved the contract for goose control services at Blue Hill Golf Course and Veterans Memorial Park to Hudson Valley Wild Goose Chasers of Nyack at a cost of $900 per month for Veterans Park and $700 per month for Blue Hill.
- Approved a r to upgrade the intersection of Middletown Road and Central Ave. in Pearl River for improved pedestrian safety.
- Unanimously voted to accept the current draft of the Rockland Psychiatric Center Redevelopment Plan. A copy of the plan is attached to this report. Check back with Patch for more on the plan and the next steps the town will be taking.
- Voted 4-1 to approve Thomas Warren as chair of ACABOR (Architecture and Community Appearance Board of Review). Stewart was the no vote. He supported keeping Paul Papay as the chair of the committee.
- Approved keeping the cost of Hawking and Peddling licenses at $250 for Orangetown residents, but increased it from $250 to $300 for non-residents.
- The board did not approve a request from the Palisades Library to waive building permit fees. When the measure came up, no member of the council made a motion to bring it to a vote. The board is discussing creating a policy that would not allow for the waiving of fees, even for non-profits.
- Accepted the retirement of Personnel Administrator Eileen Schlag, effective Feb. 28.
- The presentation of awards from the Orangetown Substance Abuse Committee was postponed until a future date because one of the awardees was not present for Tuesday's meeting.