New York City government canceling Trump Organization contract to run Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point
Golf and Politics

New York City government canceling Trump Organization contract to run Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point

The City of New York government is terminating all four contracts it has with the Trump Organization to operate a quartet of entertainment venues in the city, including running Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point in the Bronx.

New York City mayor Bill de Blasio appeared on MSNBC's "Morning Drive" on Wednesday to announce the news.

Mayor de Blasio said all of the contracts have language that say "if a company or the leadership of that company is engaged in criminal activity, we have to right to sever the contract."

He added, "Inciting an insurrection against the United States government clearly constitutes criminal activity."

The Trump Organization brings in approximately $17 million annually from these four contracts, which includes operating three venues in Manhattan, like an ice-skating rink and a merry-go-round in Central Park.

Ferry Point, located on a former landfill site in the Bronx, began operating in May 2015, with former mayor Michael Bloomberg signing a deal with the Trump Organization to operate the public-access facility. Jack Nicklaus' Nicklaus Companies designed the course, including associate John Sanford, after decades of bureaucratic roadblocks to development and an unwillingness to commit money to finish the project converting a former landfill in the shadow of the Whitestone Bridge.

In 2012, Trump offered to step in and help usher the city-funded $127 million project to completion, offering to help finish the course and required facilities in exchange for a management deal which would assure him guaranteed minimum payments and an overwhelming portion of the property's total income. Trump's contract has him only paying 7 percent of green fees, food-and-beverage and merchandise sales to the city. Included in the sweetheart deal was a 20-year lease to the Trump Organization for the land which didn't require Trump to pay rent until 2019. Trump does not pay concession fees or for water the course uses, which could run approximately $150,000 per year when compared to other NYC municipal courses.

Trump was contractually obligated to build a permanent, $10 million clubhouse by March 31, 2020.

The green fees are not cheap at Trump Ferry Point, with the weekend green fee coming in at $185 for city residents -- much higher than the dozen other city-owned courses.

Once Trump entered the presidential race and then subsequently became President, play at the Ferry Point facility started to drop. Rounds in 2016 dropped 11 percent from the first year, with players shying away from the property.

Trump is reported to have made the first hole-in-one on the property in the inaugural round in 2013.

Credit: Golf Digest

“Can you believe that?” he said of the claimed ace to the Wall Street Journal in 2013. “It’s a great omen to the course.”

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