Over the past several months, and especially the last week, there’s been a great deal of conversation about the status of the Oakmont golf courses. The OVA Board continues to be deeply involved in this issue and has not yet voted on any OGC matter. I’d like to clarify here exactly what the BOD is doing and how we might proceed.
You can find details below about the work of both the existing board committee as well as a newly formed committee. All interested OVA members are invited to participate in a deeper discussion of this at the BOD Workshop next week. Please join us from 3 – 5 PM in the Berger Center on October 2nd.
Some Oakmonters are against providing money to the OGC under any circumstances. Some Oakmonters are for providing money to the OGC under any circumstances. All others (in numbers that may constitute a plurality) require reasonable justification.
I believe the average OVA homeowner needs two things to justify providing financial aid to the OGC through a dues contribution: 1) credible reason to believe that whatever contribution is made will lead to OGC financial sustainability in a defined period of time and 2) something(s) of value to OVA (particularly non-golfing OVA members) in return. Legally, the latter of these is required in any case, as without it, a non-profit cannot contribute to a for-profit business.
Thus far, the OVA golf subcommittee and the OGC board have focused on the latter of these needs. The former need (a credible path out of the financial wilderness) has not yet been satisfied.
The road to OGC financial sustainability should be provided in the form of a business plan, with assumptions and projections showing how and over what period of time the OGC is likely to regain its financial footing given capital infusions of specific amounts and timing. It’s what any lender would want to see were a struggling business to ask it for a loan. Absent that, there is no way any reasonable OVA homeowner can conclude that his/her money would not simply delay the inevitable collapse of the OGC business.
The good news is that a committee consisting of three finance committee members and two OGC board members was just recently formed to produce this business plan. I commend the OGC board for voting to form this committee and have high hopes that the committee’s output will be useful to everyone.
There’s an additional, critical point. Any future OVA board can easily erase any commitment made by this OVA board. An OVA board that provides money to OGC in the absence of the two things I mentioned above may well be replaced quickly by a board unwilling to even consider OGC needs.
Although some believe the OVA board should “just do it” and vote for a subsidy, they should realize that the OVA would need to justify any proposed subsidy to the average Oakmont resident or we hurt both the OVA and the OGC.