Spotlight Report

Sanford’s Triple Bogey: The City Government Has No Business Being in the Golf Business

posted on in City & County Government, Spending & Taxes

Over the past five years, Sanford’s city owned and operated golf course experienced operational losses of more than $1 million. With its course, the city engages in unfair competition with five private courses in the immediate area and 45 courses within a 30-mile radius of Sanford. Private golf courses contribute to the local government by paying city and county taxes. Unlike police and fire protection, golf is not an essential city service. If the course were sold, city taxpayers would gain the amount of the sale and avoid paying its average annual losses of $200,000 per year. Also, a privately operated golf course would contribute to the tax base of the city and county.

Michael Sanera is Director of Research and Local Government Studies at the John Locke Foundation. He served as a policy analyst for the Washington, DC based The Heritage Foundation, and the Competitive Enterprise Institute and the California based Claremont Institute. ...

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We are North Carolina’s Most Trusted and Influential Source of Common Sense. The John Locke Foundation was created in 1990 as an independent, nonprofit think tank that would work “for truth, for freedom, and for the future of North Carolina.” The Foundation is named for John Locke (1632-1704), an English philosopher whose writings inspired Thomas Jefferson and the other Founders.

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