Golf subscriptions stay, for now
Most of the 201 voting members at Yarrawonga Mulwala Golf Club Resort’s 2018 Annual General Meeting were happy to empower the Board of Directors to increase annual subscriptions up to 10%.
But the majority vote did not reach the required 75% for the Special Resolution to be successful.
Beforehand, club president Gil Cunningham explained to attendees the board strongly believed the rise sought was necessary to put a dint in, not overcome by itself, rising club costs.
He outlined substantial increases expected with electricity, fuel costs and Foxtel services. “We enjoy great facilities at very reasonable costs,” the president said.
“In the board’s view, we should all be putting our hands up for future generations. We should be prepared to share some small increase in fees short-term.”
Club life member and past president Stuart Spinks said there has never been a time in the past 30 years of YMGCR when there has been more need to increase the annual membership fees.
“In the first year it would cost us $25 – 48 cents a week or seven cents a day – and that is only if the board actually imposed the 10 per cent each and every year,” he said.
“We have made losses for the last three years in a row. Prior to that we had made profits year after year for the last 50 years.
“We are cheaper by a long shot than any of the clubs we traditionally compare ourselves to, mainly along the Murray River. Our current full membership fee is $315 or $380 for a country member. Most other clubs that we traditionally compare ourselves to are $600 to $700 – roughly double what or club is charging and some of them are still not making a profit.
“We cannot go on living in fairy land of making loss after loss while still keeping the annual fees so low and think we can sustain it.”
Mr Spinks received strong support from the likes of Jo Angwin. But there were some speakers, including Mick Birchall, who said numbers of patrons had significantly reduced and he wanted the club to entice more people through the doors.
Former club president Lou Bozzola said he was against the move for higher subscriptions. He suggested a wait and see approach following the recent departure of the CEO after five years in the job and a fresh approach by a new CEO.
Following the resolution’s decision, Cathy Spinks said the matter can be handled again by the club before the 2019 AGM, at a special meeting if so desired.
A new Chief Executive Officer is expected to be known by year’s end according to Mr Cunningham, following the resignation in August of Richard Hogg.
“The process is well underway,” Mr Cunningham explained. There were 107 applicants which speaks volumes to me how this club is viewed. We’re now in the process of shortlisting the applicants.”