August 11, 2015

Commissioners Present: Anne O’Connell (Chair), Jeff Odell (Vice-Chair), Cindy Bingham, Carl Blanchard, Wyn Morton, Ed Pavlu, and John Piemontese.

Others Present: Mark O’Brien (Director of Operations), Pete Ervin (Superintendent), Jerri Carlin (Friends of Captains), and Jackie Ferraguto (Women’s 9-Hole Assn.).

This meeting was held at the Town Hall and was televised. The video of the meeting may be viewed at:

Call to Order: Anne O’Connell called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m.

Golf Commission Reorganization:

  • Carl Blanchard nominated Anne O’Connell for Chairperson, seconded by Jeff Odell. Motion approved 7-0-0.
  • Ed Pavlu nominated Jeff Odell for Vice Chair, seconded by Carl Blanchard. Motion approved 7-0-0.

Public Comment:

  • Jerri Carlin reported that the Women’s 9-Hole Association finishes their league championship this week and they will be having their Rally for Women event at the end of the month to raise money for the Cuda Center.
  • Jerri Carlin reported that the Friends of the Captains has agreed to pay $3,000 for screening for the porto-johns. In addition they have agreed to pay $3,500 for 100 & 200 yard markers to be placed in the fairway. This represents half the total cost and the golf course will pay the remainder from their operating budget. Lastly, they donated 5 benches that were built by Jeff Odell and placed at the driving range. 

Correspondence and Suggestion Box:

  • #10 Port greenside bunker liner is coming through. Pete Ervin will address.
  • Why do we only have Callaway club fittings and Bridgestone ball fittings? Mark O’Brien will discuss with Jay Packett.
  • An email from Jean Raymond, a Twilight member, was discussed. The email concerned some issues in regard to making tee times. Mark O’Brien stated that the system is working correctly and he will speak with her about the reservation procedures to clarify. Cindy Bingham asked Mark O’Brien to add language on the web site instructing players to call the pro shop for day of play reservations. Mark O’Brien stated that he would take care of this.
  • The email also questioned why Twilight members are not permitted to participate in member tournaments. Discussion followed. Carl Blanchard made a motion, seconded by Anne O’Connell, to allow all members to participate in all Captains Golf Course sponsored tournaments effective immediately (does not include Association events). The motion was approved 5-2-0 (Cindy Bingham and Anne O’Connell voted against).
  • Wyn Morton discussed access to golf commission email mail box. He will speak to the web master about how to gain access to the suggestion box on the web site.  

Superintendent’ Report (Pete Ervin):

  • The courses are in great shape.
  • July had 8 days above 90%, 12 days above 80% humidity. This is prime disease weather, but our venting and spraying programs have been successful in keeping disease under control.
  • We have had about 2.4” of rain in July, down from the average of 3.3”.
  • The staff has done an outstanding job of syringing greens tees and fairways to keep the turf going.  
  • This has helped to learn the gaps in the irrigation system.
  • Thank you to the Friends for the donation of the benches for the driving range.

Director of Operations Report:

  • We met with the Selectmen last night to review the FY2015 financial performance. The end result was a surplus to the Town of $113,883.
  • The Selectmen will be having a discussion about transferring monies from the Golf Cart Receipts Reserved for Appropriation account. There is a scheduled transfer for the May Town meeting in order to meet the FY2015 number above. The discussion will be whether to reduce this transfer to an amount that will just have the golf department breakeven. They will include the Golf Commission in these discussions.
  • July was very strong. Revenues were up about 11%.
  • Total membership is 952 this year as opposed to 946 last year.
  • Membership survey was reviewed. The response rate was about 35%.
  • Mark O’Brien recommended that we offer the off-season membership again this year. Jeff Odell made a motion, seconded by Carl Blanchard, to offer the off-season membership to run from September 1, 2015 through March 31, 2016 at the same rates as last year. Motion approved 7-0-0.
  • Cindy Bingham asked how many off-season members last year joined as full members this year. Mark O’Brien will get that information.
  • Mark O’Brien asked if Jeff Odell would talk directly with Kathy Lambert about a real-time web cam.
  • Mark O’Brien reported that there is an article on the Town meeting warrant to allow the Selectmen to enter into a long term agreement for solar canopies at the golf course. This does not mean this is moving forward. The Town’s Alternative Energy Committee will be discussing this and keep the Golf Commission informed.

Web Site (Wyn Morton):

  • Wyn has been having discussion with Charlie Heller, our web master, about taking advantage of on-line advertising opportunities. He will be meeting with Charlie on an on-going basis and if anyone is interested in sitting in they are welcome.

Expansion of 9-Hole Play Options (Carl Blanchard):

  • Carl Blanchard would like us to investigate expanding our 9-hole play offerings in order to increase revenues.
  • Mark O’Brien will provide Carl with data that he can review in looking into this.

Replacement of Title “Ranger” (Carl Blanchard):

  • Mark O’Brien did use the title “On Course Player Assistant” on the cart signs that refer to pace of play.

Town Employee Playing Privileges (Cindy Bingham):

  • Cindy asked when town employees are allowed to play. Mark O’Brien reported that they are allowed to play after 3:00 p.m. Mark reported that this time has been relaxed when play is very quiet.
  • The above privilege is not in the town employee’s contract, but it is a Golf Commission policy. There is a provision in the Town’s union contracts that states that town employees may get a membership at the golf course at the resident rate even if they are not a Brewster resident.

Action Items:

  • Pace of play signs are in the carts.
  • Containers for broken tees are in place.

Follow Up:

  • Mark O’Brien reported that the golf staff has not been able to man the bag drop on a regular basis. It is his opinion that in order to really test the effectiveness of having a bag drop attendant it is necessary to have designated staff for this purpose.
  • Jeff Odell asked about having the water attendants start earlier so that the water buckets could be filled for the back 9 play.
  • Carl will investigate using volunteers for this purpose.

Future Agenda Items:

  • Rate discussion

Review and Approve 7/14/15 minutes:

  • Jeff Odell made a motion to approve the minutes of 7/14/15 as written, seconded by Cindy Bingham. Motion approved 6-0-1 (Anne O’Connell abstained).

Topics the Chair did not anticipate:

  • Anne O’Connell asked about the lightning warning system. Mark O’Brien stated that the contract has just been executed and the install is being scheduled.

Ed Pavlu made a motion, seconded by Carl Blanchard to adjourn the meeting. The motion was approved 7-0-0. Meeting adjourned at 5:39 p.m. The next meeting will be held on September 8, 2015 at 4:00 p.m. at the Town Hall.
Respectfully Submitted,
Mark O’Brien, Director of Operations

The Pro Shop is closed to the public until further notice. Face coverings must be worn at all times on the Captains Golf Course property. 18-Hole riding carts are restricted to those with a 12:00 tee time or earlier and 9-Hole riding carts are restricted to those with a 1:57 tee time or earlier. The driving range is closed until further notice and the Freemans Grill is closed for the season. RENTAL CLUBS ARE NOT AVAILABLE. Non-Member tee times may be reserved up to two days in advance. Reservations are required for all play - WALK-ONS ARE NOT PERMITTED.