All questions and requests for clarification must be submitted in writing and will be answered in writing on an ongoing basis to ensure all groups understand the context and intent. It is the bidders responsibility to check this page for updates. Questions regarding the proposed project and specific requirements/intent for responding to the needs of the project as hereinafter described shall be submitted by email: TO: Mark Jones, Director of Parks and Recreation, firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline to submit questions is August 18, 2020 at midnight.
Question 1: Is it possible for the City or Parks to allow access to Greenbelt’s historical financial records?
Answer: We have provided a document for you to access the financial records for Greenbelt from January 2016 – June 2020. Download the PDF.
Question 2: License to sell beer and wine at Greenbelt still in place? The Parks Department currently holds an in good standing, 2-way alcohol license (beer and wine).
Answer: If the new management individual/firm would like a 3-way, the Parks Department would release our license and the new management individual/firm would begin a brand new liquor license application. If a 2-way license is all that is being desired, the Parks Department would look to transfer the in good standing license over to the new management individual/firm provided the transaction could occur prior to the Parks Department paying for the renewal. Likely, the new management individual/firm in either set of circumstances, would have to provide proof of lease to the Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission and will need to meet all laws and steps to have the license transferred from the City into his/her/their name.
Question 3: Expected date of take over?
Answer: We expect that after all required board meetings, negotiations, and contracts have been signed, we would be into the latter part October. Earliest transition would likely occur during the month of November. However, that is subject to change.
Question 4: Explanation about the General Fund contributions on the budget provided – can you confirm what the personal line includes?
Answer: It includes 2 full-time and approximately 15-20 part-time staff (hours fluctuate). The line “Golf Pro Salary & Benefits from General Fund**** (GF)” is strictly the Golf Pro budget, benefits and insurance.
Question 5: Is there an existing management lease that we could have as an example?
Answer: No, not one that would be worthy of comparison to this ground lease.
Question 6: Outside of golf, what sorts of limitations would there be for the course? Could the clubhouse be leveraged into a venue for other uses?
Answer: The golf course needs to be maintained and operated as a public golf course, open during traditional golf season hours/days of operation. However, if you would like to supplement the revenue by adding additional uses for the course/clubhouse, without changing the purpose, you are free to do so. That is part of the rationale for providing a ground lease as opposed to a management lease. Your business plan can be designed to optimize the course and facilities on it.
Question 6: Please confirm that the equipment is not included in the ground lease agreement, meaning the bidder would need to provide their own equipment.
Answer: That is correct. In addition to the equipment, other items that will not be included (not an exhaustive list) are chemicals, fertilizers, sand, computers (with the exception of the irrigation computer which we will provide), point of sale system, pro shop items, concessions items (machines and goods), clubhouse furnishings, Golf Pro and Greens Superintendent office furnishings, equipment & vehicle tools, etc. will all need to be supplied by the bidder.
Question 7: Is there a list of equipment that is currently being used at Greenbelt that can be supplied for reference?
Answer: We have made available a list of the equipment currently used at Greenbelt. A note should be made that some of the equipment on this list is currently shared between Greenbelt and our other Parks Department course (indicated as such on the document), Rocky Ford Par 3. The bidder for the ground lease, may find that they need less or different equipment to most effectively and efficiently maintain a single course. This document is to serve a list of what we currently use. Download the PDF.
Question 8: Number of carts in your golf cart lease and amount per year?
Answer: Fleet of 28 carts, 53 month lease term with 30 monthly payments of $2,660 (plus applicable taxes). Lease ends 2020, carts would be returned prior to the ground lease agreement came into effect.
Question 9: Does flooding impact the course?
Answer: Flooding typically takes place between February and April and impacts the playability on holes 1, 2, 5, 6, and 7, usually for just a day or two. There is typically silt from the creek that needs cleaned up after the flooding.
Question 10: What is the water source for the course?
Answer: We are well fed.
Question 11: What is the condition of the irrigation system?
Answer: Dated but in good shape. We have just had to do head and valve replacement over time; no major issues to report.
Question 12: Any DNR permits required for work along the river?
Answer: We have not had to seek approval for the work that we conduct along the river. DNR has not visited the course or called on the course to respond to inquires during the period of time of 2015-present. We are unsure of any correspondence prior to that time.
Question 13: Any input from staff on ways that we could grow business if provided additional resources?
Answer: Range does good business, it could grow in theory but would need work dedicated to maintaining the turf. Landlocked for additional stalls. Currently it is just two levels and usually one is used for regrowth periods. Leagues could potentially grow, but you have to balance closing the course down (9 hole restrictions) when you hold a league with providing public access (and making good with your members). 9 hole outings could potentially grow, but we haven’t seen a great demand for it in our area and again, limited by 9 holes of play.
Question 14: Any permits or restrictions associated with the course since it is in city limits?
Answer: Noise and light ordinance begins at 11pm.
Question 15: Age and condition of sewer and water lines?
Answer: Working on this answer!
Question 16: Is there an appetite for course improvements/alterations?
Answer: The focus would be for us, on adding cart paths and improving drainage so that when we get inclement weather we are able to allow more play.
Question 17: Would Greenbelt continue to be able to utilize the city website and the City’s communication “reach” for marketing the golf course. We are certain that the size of the “reach” along with the credibility of staying associated with the City would be important and valuable.
Answer: We would not be able to extend use of the City website for the course marketing/information. There could be opportunity to partner on programs though, we would love to discuss those options and if that were to occur, we could then assist with marketing and reach!
Question 18: E-mail data base – does Greenbelt have a reasonably good number of e-mails in their data base to communicate to a larger group on a regular basis?
Answer: The demographics of those who are members and play Greenbelt does not lend itself to a high number of email users. We have made an attempt over the years to have our members provide us with an email address at renewal but many do not either have one or do not use it consistently and have indicated a desire to be communicated with through other methods. We do not use a true golf POS system, it has had us set at a disadvantage. There would be opportunity to improve marketing reach with that type of system put in place. We feel we could legally provide you with all member contact info that we have.
Question 19: Will the City impose hard hours of operation, and if so what will they be, for the golf course (i.e. playing golf on the course), driving range, and Clubhouse?
Answer: The nature of the ground lease is one that provides for a flexible business model for the course, range and clubhouse. The expectation is that the operator will maintain a public golf course that will remain open during typical industry standard golf hours.
Question 20: Does the kitchen require a license from the health department? If so, it is transferable?
Answer: Due to there being food service, a health department inspection is required to be completed each year. There is no cost to us as a government entity but you’ll have to contact the Bartholomew County Health Department to inquire as to what it would be for you under private management terms and whether anything can be transferred.
Question 21: To what extent is the City be willing to contribute to/pay for capital improvements (e.g. continuous cart path, drainage improvements, driving range improvements, etc.)?
Answer: The intent of the ground lease is that the city would have very little investment in the golf course after it is management by another entity. At this time, the city would not be fiscally able to invest in any capital improvement projects.
Question 22: To what extent is the City open to the clubhouse being remodeled or expanded/added on to?
Answer: Capital improvement projects invested in solely by the managing entity would need approved by the City and Parks administrations. If the managing entity wishes to remodel or expand the clubhouse and does not expect a financial contribution from the city, there is potential a project such as that would could be approved.
Question 23: What pieces of grounds equipment is the City willing to sell?
Answer: As mentioned during the site visit, the sale of equipment is negotiable for the ground lease terms. However, we do not want to give the impression that the process will be quick, easy or a secured deal. Due to government regulations, there will be a public bidding process for the sale of the equipment. The timeframe of this would likely not line up with the opening of the course.
Question 24: What pieces of occasional-use equipment is the City willing to rent to the management entity (e.g. aerator, top dresser, MB Broom etc.)?
Answer: The city is unwilling to rent the management entity any equipment; our insurance on the equipment would not permit us to do so.
Question 25: Will the City require the management entity to staff a USGA-certified golf pro?
Question 26: Is the City willing to allow the course at large to be closed for private events (i.e. rented out)?
Answer: The ground lease will not provide restrictions on the operations of the course (save to say it needs to be run as a municipal golf course and open during regular course hours).
Question 27: Is the City willing to allow occasional closure of the driving range for private events?
Answer: Same as above response.
Question 28: Is the City willing to enter into an agreement whereby the management entity could pay the City to repair/maintain the management entity’s turf equipment? If not, is the City willing to lease or sell the tools currently on site in the maintenance barn?
Answer: You would want to work with the manufacturer of your equipment for repairs, the city would be unable to complete work on a private entities equipment due to insurance liabilities. Would need to know more about what types of tools you are wanting the city to leave. Most larger scale repair work is done at the manufacturer or in another parks facility and therefore, the tools to perform those larger scale functions are not currently housed at the maintenance garage.
Question 29 & Answer: Understanding the City has been leasing its golf cart fleet:
- From whom have the carts been leased? Professional Golf Cart
- When did the lease expire (or when will it expire)? End of 2020
- When will the carts no longer be available for use at the course? Carts will be returned early so that when the managing entity begins management, no carts will be on premises.
Question 30: What of the driving range balls, baskets, and range ball washer will be left behind for the management entity’s use?
Answer: The baskets and the range ball washer are items that could be a part of negotiation for sale should a managing entity be selected. There were 500 dozen range balls purchased 2018; new balls would need purchased for the 2021 year. Due to theft and damage, making it through the year with what we have will already be a challenge.