City Council members defended their decision to allocate $2 million to save the DeBell Golf Club from financial ruin, while at the same time cutting firefighting resources, city youth jobs and library improvements.
The rescue package includes a $1-million loan to the municipal golf course and another $1 million in a holding account should the funds be needed. DeBell, which has a $718,215 operating deficit and $2.1 million in outstanding debt for a previous city loan, has been struggling to recover from a major drop in revenue.
But the latest financial help comes as the city works to close an $8.7-million budget deficit in part by reducing around-the-clock firefighter staffing, putting off library improvements and cutting the city youth job program in roughly half. Those measures add up to about $567,000 in savings.
The City Council is also moving forward with slight increases to fees for trash collection, water and sewer service.