News 12 First at Five / Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2013
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- The debate on whether or not to privatize the Patch could end on Tuesday night. Commissioners are expected to make a decision whether or not to let a Virgina company run the city's golf course.
"It's a political thing. somebody somewhere wants this golf course, and some of the commissioners are willing to give it to them," said golfer Herman Barkley.
He knows politics. Barkley was a New Jersey City Councilman for six years and now calls Augusta home.
"I didn't want to get in front of the council on something I knew nothing about," Barkley said.
Barkley tees off out on the green daily. He is ticked off about commissioners trying to privatize the municipal golf course.
Different golfers have different ideas.
"Why get rid of the Patch? They had $300,000 set aside for the Patch," Barkley said.
"I think they should do it. If the rates stay low, why not," said Golfer Buck Salazar.
If private companies can make a profit on the Patch, then why can't the city?
"The city can do it, but do they want to focus on the golfing business right now," said Mayor Pro Tem Corey Johnson.
"I've got a problem privatizing it and they can make money, but the city can't let it be self-sustaining," said Commissioner Marion Williams.
It's almost enough to turn a golfer into a gambler.
"I'm betting my z on it. So if they privatize it, you can come to my house and take the z," Barkley said.
The motion to approve the privatizing the Patch failed at Tuesday night's commission meeting.