SANFORD, Fla. - Sanford taxpayers are about to sink in hundreds of thousands of dollars into what could be a risky venture.
It could take almost $500,000 to bring the Mayfair golf course up to par.
The course has been neglected for years.
Just feet from the greens is a maintenance truck that's been sitting so long, weeds are growing out of the hood.
Avid golfers Glen and Carol Rose agree the course is not what it should be.
"They've allowed the grass to go slack. There are
[a lot] of bare spots, obviously," Glen Rose said.
That's in addition to the dilapidated cart paths, broken windows, even toilets that can't flush because of septic tank issues.
All problems that the previous
leaseholder left behind after a nasty lawsuit with the city.
City leaders have agreed to spend nearly half a million dollars to fix them.
"It's an awful lot of money
-- public money -- for what is effectively recreational for a small group of people," Glen Rose said. "We're going to find out really fast whether we're going to be able to make our money back," Sanford
Mayor Jeff Triplett said.
It's no secret golf courses don't make much money.
DeLand recently closed its course, and the Winter Springs course went into foreclosure.
City leaders said the model they're following is the one of Orlando's famed
It's a risky shot, but leaders said they hope it'll pay off.
"There is a risk
involved. I mean, this is truly an asset to the city of Sanford. We've had it for a long time. There's a lot of history involved in this golf course," Triplett said.
Another example of the problem:
Only two pieces of equipment in the entire garage actually work.
The city is hiring a private management company to run the course.
City officials say it has a track record of success, and they hope to bring that success to Sanford.
The city says it should take between three
and five years to recoup the cash it's putting in to fix up the course.