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Some upset with possibility of Lexington golf course and pools closing

By: Tamara Evans Email
By: Tamara Evans Email

He's saying 'no' to new taxes, but 'yes' to some cuts. This came today as Mayor Jim Newberry announced his budget proposal, which would include closing two pools and a golf course. The news spread quickly among those teeing off.

Lexington Mayor Jim Newberry says he's come up with a city budget for the upcoming year.

"It's one that reflects a decline in general fund revenues", says Mayor Jim Newberry.

In the budget, that is expected to save six million dollars, the Mayor is calling for 17 layoffs of full-time employees, which would come from the Finance and Administration, Social Services, and Parks departments.

City employees would not get raises this year, except those who work in public safety.

"We've undertaken a series of steps. The first of which is to try to eliminate any unnecessary spending", says Mayor Jim Newberry.

One of these ways is by closing two pools they say are underutilized. This includes Berry Hill and Constitution, which will save nearly $60,000 dollars.

"Them closing it is going to be crazy because I know a lot of people that come here actually", says Tyresha Whiting who attends Constitution Pool during the summer.

"That's where all my friends hang out", Whiting says.

The Avon golf course will also be shut down. Workers got the news around 2:00 today, which they say they're disappointed to hear.

For B.C. McCord, who works part time at the course it was news that was hard to hear, more so for the people he works with.

"I'm disheartened. We have a superintendent that he's put his heart and soul into this and he's got to figure out what he's go to do", says B.C. McCord.

He says he understands cuts having to be made. Closing the course would save $40,000 dollars, but he says the course stays busy and generates revenue.

"There's gonna be a lot of disappointed people", says B.C. McCord.

He's just hoping officials will reconsider before closing it during a busy season.

"I don't know if there is a different option. I do know this golf course has a lot of potential and that the surface of it has never even been scratched."

The proposed budget will continue to be discussed for the next month. Citizens will have numerous opportunities for input.


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