- Associated Press - Thursday, February 12, 2015

KENAI, Alaska (AP) - A health foundation’s plan to acquire a Soldotna golf course has been shot down by officials who questioned using city money to acquire a private entity.

The Soldotna City Council on Wednesday rejected the introduction of an ordinance that would have authorized the city to donate $350,000 to the Central Peninsula Health Foundation to help it acquire the Birch Ridge Golf Course, the Peninsula Clarion (https://is.gd/oG7uko) reported.

The money would have accounted for half of the funds needed to purchase the property. The money from the city would have been contingent upon the foundation obtaining a matching grant.

Four council members, including Keith Baxter, voted against the introduction of the ordinance. Helping a nonprofit organization acquire a golf course was not a responsible use of taxpayer money, given the current fiscal climate, Baxter said.

“I think it might be a waste of a lot of people’s time if we go forward and it were to fail anyway,” Baxter said.

Council member Meggean Bos, another no vote, questioned the idea of purchasing private entities with city money.

“Where do the donations stop?” Bos said. “What are we going to be asked to purchase next for the health of our community? Is it going to be a pool? Is it going to be a gym? What are we going to be buying next?”

Council member Pete Sprague did not say if he was for or against the ordinance. But he said he supported its introduction and wanted to allow public input.

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Information from: (Kenai, Alaska) Peninsula Clarion, https://www.peninsulaclarion.com


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