Golf Enterprise Account

To better inform you on Lynnfield’s Golf Enterprise Account, the following information is provided below.

Lynnfield Golf Enterprise Account
Total Revenue Total Expenses Profit/Loss
*FY07 $542,019 $826,296 ($284,277)
*FY08 $693,183 $1,479,362 ($786,179)
*FY09 $922,230 $732,775 $189,455
*FY10 $970,061 $859,156 $110,905
*FY11 $897,258 $892,665 $4,593
*FY12 $701,534 $656,841 $44,693
*FY13 $513,496 $571,635 ($58,139)
*FY14 $515,321 $577,058 ($61,737)
*FY15 $536,369 $759,411 ($223,042)
*FY16 $740,998 $846,331 ($105,333)
**FY17 $878,951 $905,994 ($27,043)
*Numbers from Massachusetts State DOR website.
**The annual Town Report 2017.

According to Mass State DOR numbers, our Golf Enterprise Account has incurred a loss of approximately $1.2M over the past 10 years.

I hope you have found this information useful.

Katy Shea

Posted in Uncategorized

Should Lynnfield Be Investing In Golf Courses?

During Lynnfield’s Town Meeiting on Monday, April 30th, you will be asked to invest in King Rail Golf Course. Below is an interesting perspective on the golf industry.

Katy Shea

Golf Course
Golf has landed in the deep rough locally and nationwide

• Mar 23, 2018

Bob Gay sees it every June when he stands on the balcony of Chemawa Golf Course in North Attleboro.
Gay and Bob Beach, co-presidents of the Attleboro Area Golf Association, use the elevated setting to address the participants in the AAGA Senior Championship before they tee off.
With the exception of the AAGA Championship — commonly called the “City Open” and the only four-day, four-venue golf tournament in Massachusetts — the competition for age 50-plus players is by far the most popular event the organization puts on each year.
Gay estimates the senior tourney annually attracts 100-110 players. The AAGA Junior Championship, meanwhile, draws about 30 participants. It’s been years since there was enough participation for the AAGA to hold a women’s championship.
“You look out and you see a lot of guys who have been playing for a long time, guys who once played in the City Open and now play in the Senior,” Gay said. “They still love the game. But you just don’t see as many younger players with the same enthusiasm.”
That, say those in the local golf industry, sums up the problem: The game, still loved by millions, is failing to attract a younger audience or women. Young adults strapped by student debt don’t have the time, the money or the focus to invest in a sport that can easily consume half a day — not counting the 19th hole.
Participation in the sport is down from its peak of about 12 years ago, and golf course closings, nationally and locally, are on the rise.
Both have occurred in the Attleboro area.
Local golf courses are not nearly as full as they once were. At many local public courses, players can walk up at many hours of the day, pay their greens fee and tee off — unheard of 15 years ago.
Local private clubs have all stepped up membership drives, particularly hoping to attract younger players and families.
The City Open was, in Gay’s view, “the biggest sporting event in town next to the Thanksgiving Day football game.” In its heyday, roughly 250 competitors would try to qualify for the tournament, forcing the AAGA to hold morning and afternoon sessions for competitors to play their way in.
“There were big crowds around the scoreboard, everybody trying to see who got in,” Gay said.
Now, the qualifier attracts a little more than 100 players.
But the biggest impact in the area is the golf course closings.
In 2015, Willowdale Golf Course, a tiny, nine-hole, par-30 layout nestled in a Mansfield neighborhood, closed. It is now a housing subdivision.
In 2016, Locust Valley Country Club, a nine-hole public course in Attleboro beloved by players for its funky layout, abruptly closed. Owner David Bourque
In 2017, the owners of Heather Hill Country Club in Plainville, a 27-hole public course first established after World War II, announced they planned to turn the vast tract of land into 55-plus housing. That closing would hinge on the developer securing permits, a task that is probably several years from completion if it is done at all.
The real shocker came in January when the board of directors of Highland Country Club filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Established in 1901, Highland is the granddaddy of local golf courses and one of the oldest clubs in Massachusetts.
Long considered the gathering place of Attleboro’s moneyed elite, Highland got weighed down by debt and, like much of the golfing industry, failed to grow its membership. Stung by frequent assessments added to their dues and attracted by offers from other private clubs in the area, dozens of Highland members quit the club this winter, leaving the board little choice but to seek bankruptcy protection under the section that does not allow for reorganization.
Highland may, in fact, still operate as early as this year. Many members told The Sun Chronicle they have heard of several parties interested in buying the club and operating it as a golf course. That would have to happen very quickly, however, for the nine-hole layout near Mechanics Pond to be ready for the traditional start of the season at the beginning of April.
“What a shame,” said Gay, a longtime member.
It’s a phrase echoed by nearly everyone interviewed for this story.
Jesse Menachem is among them. He was somewhat surprised by the bankruptcy filing, but he sees a bigger picture when it comes to golf.
Menachem is the executive director of Mass Golf, the Norton-based organization that oversees the sport in the Bay State. Golf is a game, he said, but it’s also a business, one that he believes is now coming out of an upheaval.
Golf peaked around 2006 when, according to the National Golf Foundation, more than 30 million Americans considered themselves golfers and 550 million rounds were played on U.S. Golf courses, many of them nestled in expensive housing developments that popped up across the country.
Economic times were good. And golf had a charismatic, biracial superstar in Tiger Woods who many investors expected would attract players of all colors.
The Tiger Boom, as it was called, spurred the construction of long, challenging golf courses that demanded exorbitant greens fees to play. Many took up the sport, found it too difficult or too expensive or too time-consuming to play, and gave up.
The number of players fell by 20 percent, leveling off to about 25 million and 455 rounds over the last five years.
It was inevitable that some courses would close due to the over-expansion, says a report by the National Golf Foundation, which adds that more courses are likely to close in the years ahead.
“Although there will be excellent new golf courses being built in the future, the gradual market correction is expected to continue for the next few years,” the report said.
“It’s a simple matter of supply and demand,” Menachem said.

Some private clubs may have to change their business model, Menachem said, and that may have contributed to Highland’s difficulties. Many clubs like Highland that are owned and managed by members have struggled, he said, while clubs operated by companies have been more successful.
Norton Country Club, for example, is owned by the Jan Companies. Besides a handful of other golf clubs in Massachusetts, it owns several Burger King franchises and other restaurants and can bring management expertise and economies of scale to a course.
Golf, Menachem believes, is still a strong business in Massachusetts. With more than 350 member courses, Mass Golf is the nation’s seventh largest golf association. Golf generates employment for 25,000 workers in Massachusetts and raises $74 million for local charities.
The sport does face challenges, he acknowledged.
“We’ve got to break down the barriers that golf is an elitist, male-dominated game,” Menachem said.
One way to do that is to attract more women. That’s one of the reasons that the Massachusetts Golf Association merged with the Women’s Golf Association of Massachusetts at the start of this year to form Mass Golf.
That organization is now offering more competition for the state’s top female players. It is also working with member clubs to attract more women, who are outnumbered 7 to 2 nationally in the sport.
Among those incentives are shorter, more playable layouts, nine-hole or even six-hole events and child care, so Mom can play with Dad or with her friends.
“If your gym can offer it, why can’t we?” Menachem said.
Nationally, the United States Golf Association has been pushing a Play 9 initiative, seeking to overcome the notion that only 18 holes of golf is legitimate.
The other big challenge is getting younger people to play. Many in the industry are concerned that attracting millennials to an expensive game that takes a long time to play and isn’t prone to instant gratification will be next to impossible.
However, two efforts right here in the Attleboro area (see accompanying story) make the case that young people will grow to love the game. You just have to put clubs in their hands.
The Barend family of North Attleboro has founded the Girls Independent Golf League — GIGL for short — with the idea of letting girls play and have fun without the potentially intimidating presence of boys. The league and a pair of daylong clinics draw 500 players from Eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island. It’s being used as a model for similar programs across the United States and even into Australia.
Mike Michel of North Attleboro began 24 Hours of Golf, where he and a buddy play around the clock to raise funds. The Mike Michel Golf Fund has raised more than $100,000 in just a few years, supplying clubs, memberships and lessons to any youngster who wants to play the game but can’t afford it.
Menachem says golf needs to escape the idea that the game is something men use to escape for long hours on the weekend.
“We need more flexibility to the needs of golfers,” he said. “We need to be more family-oriented. This is a game that Dad can play with Mom and the kids. It’s a game you can play your whole life. What other sport can say that?”
Golf Picture

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Theater Design – Market Street Meeting Thursday, April 26

Please see the attached agenda for the upcoming Market Street meeting. At this meeting the following information will be presented: design, experience and financial impact. Parking plans and the potential parking structure will also be reviewed. The meeting will be held Thursday, April 26 at 7:30, in the Merritt Center.

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Posted in Uncategorized

“none of us can possibly know what we all know”

Citizen-Participation-Image-2070045525.Dear Editor, Readers, Neighbors and Friends
Denying open meeting participation is the wrong approach as, “none of us can possibly know what we all know”.
Last Wednesday, April 4th, was a first. Having attended nearly all of the past Market Street Advisory Committee (MSAC) meetings, on this evening I respectfully waited for the public participation opportunity at the close of the committee’s agenda. I rose to be recognized and was dismissively told that “at the discretion of the Chair” there would be no public participation.
For the first time in my 25 years of citizen participation I saw the closure of a public meeting, to which citizens are encouraged to attend, take place without allowing time for any participation. This is particularly concerning, because the MSAC’s “Mission” is to provide for “effective and ongoing communication for Lynnfield residents, Town of Lynnfield Representatives and WS Development and National Development.”
At all previous MSAC meetings, the agendas have allowed limited public participation; restricted to “2 minutes per attendee” in the interest of reaching their targeted 8:30PM adjournment.
It is noteworthy that on this evening, the meeting agenda – which included a discussion of the topics/issues that MSAC intends to evaluate in conjunction with National Development’s most recent 800 seat cineplex proposal – ended around 8:10PM, well before the regular 8:30PM deadline. Yet when I asked to be recognized to offer a clarifying remark on topics raised during the meeting, given that there was ample time for public comment, I was summarily denied this established opportunity and the meeting was abruptly adjourned.
Lynnfield is a town of volunteers. Like many others, I have volunteered time to our community, highlighted for me by service on the Town Finance Committee and in particular as the Fin Com liaison to the School Building Committee. This effort lead to Lynnfield being the very first community to take advantage of new State legislation for financing the backlog of unfunded school projects. Recently I served as one of several volunteers on the search committee for a new Town Manager.
So this sad act of denial will not dissuade me from attending and participating in the remaining meetings of the MSAC or any other meeting where I believe there are perspectives that should be weighed when it concerns my family, my neighbors and my town.
David Basile

Posted in Uncategorized

Voting Today Lynnfield High School 7am -8pm


Town elections are today and your vote is important. Please follow ballot instructions and cast your vote.

Have a great day!
Katy Shea

Posted in Uncategorized

Proposed School Budget Rises as Children Services and Programs Face Cuts

The annual town election is Tuesday, April 10. There is a hotly contested race for school committee. Your choice is:

· Re-elect long-time School Committee Chairman Tim Doyle, who promises stability and a proven track record

· Elect Kimberly Hansen, who proposes change with a long-term management perspective to improve the schools

· Elect Phil McQueen, who champions change to enhance the academic learning experience

You can vote for any two of the three. To help you make this choice, here are some facts.

Our School Committee has proposed a budget increase of approximately 4.5% for the April 2018 Town meeting which involves cutting positions of much needed aides and programs for our young children. The School Committee’s proposed budget increase of over $1.1M is still not enough to maintain our current level of services.

At the same time, our School Department has been rocked by, but survived 2 recent incidents. The Lynnfield Villager, on March 7, 2018, reported that High School teacher Kacy Zurkus was awarded two years backpay by an arbitrator for wrongful dismissal, giving her a lump sum settlement of $225K. Additionally, in the second incident, Lelo Masamba was fired. Ms. Masamba has sued the Lynnfield Public Schools in Essex Superior Court seeking damages for discrimination and breach of contract. Ms. Masamba seeks back pay and other damages. Her yearly salary was $62,125, putting the potential damages in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. When this case is settled, it could further potentially divert funds from our children’s educational programs to rectify the alleged missteps of the current administration.

Despite the voter’s continued support of the sizeable increasing school budget, the Town’s children are still facing teaching staff and program cuts. It is up to you to vote for the status quo or for change.


Please vote Tuesday, April 10th.


Katy Shea

Posted in Uncategorized


“No one has ever complained about it before.”

I am thrilled with the creation of the new space committee and hope for great results from it. It is clear however, that this committee will not save PREDs for next year. So, over the past few weeks I have continued my conversations with parents, school leaders and most importantly, our school committee about potential solutions for the program. In one particular meeting with a SC member, I was told that at SSS there are specialists working out of closets and gym classes happening in classrooms – these examples were given in defense of PREDs being cut. My natural reaction was to ask this SC member if what he just said was true, did he STILL insist there is NO space issue at SSS? “Well – No one has ever complained about it before.” was the response I got. Wow. This is the culture of our school committee.

In this conversation, and in many others with school and town leaders, I have been thrilled to learn that our position on these issues is supported. For the most part, EVERYONE has agreed that 1. the abrupt removal of such an important program is unacceptable, 2. the timing and tone of the communication was thoughtless and 3. that parents deserve a SOLUTION from the school system – not just conflicting explanations of why it happened.

Despite all of this support, Superintendent Tremblay STILL will not budge on her decision or even meet with parents to brainstorm creative solutions. In fact, in my meeting with this SC member I explained that because of conflicting information about how the decision to cut PREDs was made, my trust in their process was gone. As a show of good faith, I asked to be taken on the walk-through of SSS that ultimately determined there was no room for PREDs. The SC member agreed it was a reasonable request, and I left optimistic for real answers! But that same afternoon I received a phone call from Superintendent Tremblay inviting me in for a meeting. When asked if this meeting would include my requested walk-through, I got a quick and firm: “No.”

Why? What is there to lose unless this decision was not as thought out as our school leadership would lead us to believe? When your parents are asking for, and your school committee is supporting, something THIS SIMPLE why say no? So much goodwill could have been built. But letting parents “in” is not the culture of our school leadership.

I’m sharing this as an update to the PREDs/Space conversation that has been going on since January. But also as a warning – these are two clear examples of the current culture of our school committee and leadership. They wait until someone complains about something to take action. And they turn down a simple request that would create so much goodwill with a population of parents suffering the consequences of an internal decision.

This is a culture that does not understand its community. This is a culture that is afraid to rock the boat. This is a culture that forgets they promised to do their very best when campaigning for such important roles in our children’s lives. But CULTURE is a really hard thing to change – it takes a major shift in an organization to do it effectively. It takes new perspectives, new energy and most important, a whole lot of guts and passion to make change happen.

Luckily, we all have the opportunity to dramatically change the makeup AND CULTURE of our school committee on Tuesday 4/10. If you have been made angry, sad, scared or frustrated by being shut out of important decisions effecting your children, I sincerely hope you will use your TWO votes to bring new, experienced, passionate people to our school committee. Please take some time to get to know our two new candidates via their campaign pages below.

Kimberlee Kossover Hansen for School Committee

Phil McQueen for School Committee

To close – I did take Superintendent Tremblay up on her offer to meet one on one and plan to ask some really hard questions about the inconsistencies in their explanations. I am not expecting her to budge, but want her to understand WE ARE PAYING ATTENTION. And these types of things cannot continue. If you have anything you’d like asked, email me and I’ll try my best to get an answer.


Posted in Schools, Uncategorized