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REPORTING · 21st August 2015
Walter McFarlane
Kitimat City Council received a presentation from the Hirsch Creek Golf and Winter Club on Monday, August 17th. Robin Lapointe and Steve Haggard got up to speak to Council. They were there to follow up on the Council Meeting in February where they requested financial support and update Council on the club finances.

“We believe the last six months have been very successful, thanks, a little bit to the early start, the nice weather, but also thanks to our members. Our members have come out and supported us really well over the summer. We’ve been able to make a number of additions to the club. We’ve also had the support of small business,” said Lapointe. “Rio Tinto and LNG Canada have been phenomenal in donating equipment and materials to us.”

Lapointe told Council there were three setbacks. They lost the cover to their driving range during the heavy snowfall. They had a technician look over the Curling Rink and find one recommendation, raising the condenser to make it more efficient. Finally, they lost the dehumidifier in the curling rink and the cost to replace it is $25,000 to $30,000.

“We can’t fire up the curling without it so we’re looking at having to spend that money between now and the middle of November,” said Lapointe.

He said it would take $100,000 to replace or repair those three items.

Lapointe explained they did a lot better than they had expected. They changed the way membership works at the club. Green fees have down due to the downsizing at the camp. Finally, they were low on their food and beverage side. However, they were up on their donations and were able to reduce their expenditures. They expected to have $162,000 loss, they will have $152,000, not including the costs to repair the three deficiencies.

They are $80,000 into their $200,000 operating loan. They expect the loan will be consumed by the end of November.

Lapointe asked Council for an advance on their financial support in order to reduce their bank charges and carry them into their next year.

Councillor Mario Feldhoff asked what the saturation of their debt was. Lapointe said they were $277,000 in debt. Councillor Larry Walker asked how much money it would cost to put a roof on their driving range. The response was they do not know. They have the steel but they do not know how much the concrete will take.

Lapointe stated they were given steel by Rio Tinto and the steel is being stored at Kitimat Iron. They want to pour the foundation and ask Kitimat Iron to fabricate the structure for them over the winter and they will erect it this spring. If they had to pay for it, it would be $40,000.

Walker asked if anything could be put off till 2016. He was told the condenser could.

Councillor Claire Rattee asked what kind of revenue the curling generated last year. The response was $50,000.
Pull the plug.
Comment by Pinnwheel on 4th September 2015
If this club can't support it's self and is in need of constant funding from the tax payer's of Kitimat where can we expect to draw the line?
It's just bussiness and if you can't afford to keep it running then don't, but do not expect we the tax payer's to keep putting out the money to keep it, besides that Golf licks ***......
not just golf course
Comment by informed on 27th August 2015
you would be surprised at the amount of " CLUBS" in Kitimat that receive funding from the City of Kitimat...
And the Hirsch Creek Golf & Winter Club is a semi private/public club !
Comment by sue galbraith on 25th August 2015
Just a matter of my own opinion, but how many times does the town have to bail out the golf course? This seems to be an on going problem. There are other clubs in Kitimat that never ask for money and seem to do alright. They host fund raisers,active member recruitment, rentals of their clubs etc... seems that a private club can bail themselves out. Any other business that cant make any money closes. What makes the golf course any different?