Commissioners Present: Anne O’Connell (Chair), Andrea Johnson (Vice-Chair), Carl Blanchard, John Kissida, Wyn Morton, Jeff Odell, and David Valcourt
Others Present: Mark O’Brien, Director of Operations, Colin Walsh, Golf Course Superintendent, Jay Packett (Asst. Oper. Mgr.), Rob Harris (CCMGA), Donna Potts (9-Hole Women’s Assn) and Bill Meehan (Finance Committee Liaison).
THIS MEETING WAS HELD REMOTELY WITH AUDIO AND VIDEO RECORDED. The meeting may be viewed at:http://video.brewster-ma.gov/CablecastPublicSite/show/5157?channel=1
Anne O’Connell called the meeting to order at 4:00 pm after reading remote meeting guidelines and procedures.
- Colin Walsh reported winter equipment and golf course repairs are being done. The irrigation consulting meeting is scheduled for Thursday. Planning for 2021 is continuing. Anne O’Connell asked about a large tree taken down on Starboard 15. Colin Walsh explained the tree was taken down to open the area to sun and to dry it out.
- Jay Packett reported the month of December was another record month. The course was closed for five days due to snow. The 2020 totals were the highest since 2007. Members and guests have been commenting on the good condition of the course. Revenue is up $5,000 over last year.
- Anne O’Connell asked about wage expenses. Jay Packett explained the clerks have been working all season. Discussion followed.
- Richard Singer from the National Golf Foundation has been in touch, requesting necessary documents.
- A memorial bench has been received in memory of Judy McCarthy along with a request for a 9-hole shotgun event on either June 3, 10 or 17. Judy had been a member of the Golf Commission for two terms. Jay Packett suggested scheduling this event for June 3.
- A motion was made by Jeff Odell, seconded by Wyn Morton, to approve the request of the 9-hole event at Jay Packett’s discretion. Motion passed unanimously.
Update on meeting process and meeting Schedule:
- The format for the commissions meeting was tested today. The meetings will be on the first and third Tuesdays of the month and will be a webinar zoom format, panelists will be let in; anyone else attending the meeting will be admitted and have the option to ask questions by chat or hand-raising. Comments will not be taken from the mailbox. Questions can be asked through the new format. The meeting schedule for the golf commission has been two meetings a month recently. Anne O’Connell would like to recommend continuing with the two meetings a month, the second meeting in the month being the regular business meeting with standard reports. The first meeting of each month will be used for discussion of matters more specific in scope, i.e. the first meeting in February Carl Blanchard will be asked to present a report on Freemans Grill for last season. Jeff Odell suggested the meetings be held on the second and fourth Tuesdays allowing the business part to be done earlier in the month. Anne O’Connell will follow up on his suggestion. Discussion followed.
- Dave Valcourt suggested swim lane owners’ reports be scheduled to follow the director’s report at the business meetings.
A discussion was held regarding the weather station and what information is available. It is Jay Packett’s understanding that the weather station cannot be linked to the web site and explained the features of the on-line weather station. He will reach out to Don Patterson in response to his email. Discussion followed. An email will be sent to the membership as to the features of the weather station.
Update on Solar Projects:
- Jeff Odell reported the main lot project was approved to go ahead with the canopy. The driving range project is anticipated to be finished by March. Jay Packett has a meeting with the project manager for the driving range tomorrow. Discussion followed.
Chelsea Point Allocation System:
- At the last meeting it was recommended that the point system be modified.
- A motion was made by John Kissida, seconded by Andrea Johnson, that an additional half point be allocated for back nine and afternoon play requests and half a point for play during the same periods. Motion passed unanimously.
- Dave Valcourt spoke on creating a calendar for use of the Golf Commission to improve the efficiency of the work done by the commission and suggested some of the items to be included.
The commission agreed this is long overdue. Jay Packett will be sending a copy of the current calendar to Anne O’Connell. Rob Harris suggested using Google as a calendar base. Bill Meehan advised that the Town’s financial calendar is public and offered his assistance in this endeavor. Mark O’Brien suggested including rates pending as approved by the commission and the Selectboard, the budget, capital requests, calendar of events, tee time allocation. Discussion followed. The golf course annual report appears in the annual booklet distributed by the town.
Questions and comments from Associations and liaisons:
- Rob Harris reported the CCMGA is working and trying to get ready for the new season, focusing on slow play for their group thus improving pace of play. He will discuss these matters at a future commission meeting
- Bill Meehan, John Kissida and Donna Potts thanked Mark O’Brien for his work at the golf course.
- Andrea Johnson commented on Mark O’Brien’s leadership through all the ups and downs over the years and credited him with the strength of the golf community.
- Dave Whitney thanked Mark O’Brien for all he has done for the golf course, for every golfer who plays at the course and for the Town of Brewster and wished him an enjoyable retirement.
- Dave Valcourt thanked Mark for all his work over the years, wishing him the best.
- Wyn Morton echoed the previous remarks and will miss seeing Mark O’Brien at the golf course.
- Rob Harris thanked Mark O’Brien for all his work with the current and previous commissioners and wished him the best.
- Carl Blanchard seconded the previous remarks and thanked Mark O’Brien for his work at the golf course.
- Jeff Odell commented on Mark O’Brien’s remarkable work and service, wishing him the best in the future.
- Jay Packett thanked Mark O’Brien and asked he “leave his phone on.”
Review and approve minutes:
- A motion was made by Jeff Odell, seconded by Wyn Morton, to approve the minutes of 1/5/2021 as revised. Motion passed unanimously.
Topics the Chair did not reasonably anticipate:
Future agenda items and meetings:
- Topics to be included on the commission calendar.
- Rob Harris CCMGA report on improving slow play.
- Report from Carl Blanchard re Freeman’s Grill.
- Details for the commissioners’ calendar.
- Update on meeting re the irrigation project.
- Report on the solar project.
A motion to adjourn was made by John Kissida, seconded by Andrea Johnson, to adjourn the meeting. Motion passed unanimously. The meeting was adjourned at 5:45 pm.