Pacifica takes swing at Sharp Park bill 

Lawmakers may soon be urging the city of San Francisco to not hack away at the future of Sharp Park Golf Course.

The Pacifica City Council, which has offered to take control of the golf course after the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department announced in May that the municipal course may be closed, leased or sold due to dwindling revenue, will eye a resolution today to ask San Francisco to keep its status as a public course.

"We are hoping to work with San Francisco to make sure Sharp Park stays a golf course and an important recreational resource in the county," Councilmember Jim Vreeland said recently.

A report by the Recreation and Park Department earlier this year said San Francisco public courses are draining money from The City’s operating budget. Sharp Park, which is located in Pacifica but falls under San Francisco jurisdiction, ran a $112,000 deficit this year.

The resolution by Pacifica officials, who last month formed a task force to create a financial feasibility plan for management of the course, outlines reasons for opposing the change of the golf course’s use, such as its historical significance; possible impact to the site’s ponds and other habitat areas from nongolf uses; and the recycled-water system that will soon be installed on the course.

A similar resolution will be considered by the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors on Dec. 18. Supervisor Rich Gordon, who introduced the resolution, said he supports Pacifica’s efforts to retain the course.

"This has been a long-standing facility in Pacifica. It is used by San Mateo County and regional folk," he said.

Gordon said that if San Francisco is trying to reduce expenses, giving the golf course to Pacifica may be a good option.

"If San Francisco is looking to get out from under expenses, then turning it over it to Pacifica would get them out from under expenses," he said. "If they are trying to make money, then they would have to sell the land for some other purpose to somebody. But I don’t know that that land has tremendous value beyond its current use."

Horace Hinshaw, a member of the Sharp Park Golf Course task force, said privatizing Sharp Park has been discussed periodically since 1973, when a professional golf group proposed to lease the course.

svasilyuk@examiner.com

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