The Goleta City Council held two public meetings yesterday to discuss current items of interest and concern for the community.
Local authorities and community members considered topics including possible purchase of the Glen Annie golf course, a potential city-wide ban on single-use plastic grocery bags and the effects that Governor Jerry Brown’s proposed state budget will have on city organizations fiscally in 2011-12.
Goleta City Attorney Tim Giles said the city could make considerable profits off of the purchase and management of the 18-hole Glen Annie course.
“[The property] has all the amenities one would expect of a public golf course,” Giles said “If the financial analysis deems it a profitable enterprise, it could possibly yield substantial earnings for the city.”
The course has been on the market for a year after the course owners defaulted on payments and the bank acquired the property. In mid-2009, the council turned down a proposal from the owners to start a housing project on the course.
Goleta Councilmember Michael Bennett said the city should invest in a $25,000 financial analysis of the property in order to determine the potential profits.
“I think it is a good idea to review this proposal,” Bennett said. “It would be a wise investment; the community already uses and loves the course and it is not unusual to see a city-owned recreational facility such as a municipal golf course.”
However, Councilmember Margaret Connell said the city does not have the necessary funds to purchase the land.
As of press time, the council has not decided whether to proceed.
The council also discussed the possibility of banning grocery stores from offering single-use plastic bags.
Goleta City Councilmember Edward Easton said a city-wide ban would be ineffective if other nearby cities did not follow suit.
“Goleta is too small to endeavor such a program by itself; we need at least a South Coast ban if not a statewide ban,” Easton said. “I would rather see voluntary participation with incentives rather than a complete ban.”
However, members of the council said there was a possibility of a statewide ban within the year.
The council also reviewed the budget changes made at the end of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s term as governor as well as the proposed changes Gov. Brown has issued during his term.
According to the council’s report, several of former Gov. Schwarzenegger’s fiscal actions over the past year necessitate a significant cut in funding for local governments in the coming year. The Goleta Valley Branch Library, the council said, will likely lose all state funding.